The Yelm City Council last week renewed an agreement with Yelm Animal Alliance for dog fostering and adoption services.
The city first entered into an agreement with the organization in 2010 to provide fostering and adoption of unclaimed dogs from the Yelm animal shelter, according to a staff report. The arrangement was formalized in 2012 with a service provider contract that the council renews each year.
The 2014 contract includes a revision that renews the contract annually on Jan. 1 unless either party chooses to terminate it. The agreement includes an administrative fee of $500 and $50 per dog fostered or adopted by the organization, unchanged from 2013.
“It’s been a great relationship and between our relationship with Yelm Animal Alliance and all the volunteers that do that work and our free dog licensing program, the numbers show that our licensing has increased 800 percent,” Mayor Ron Harding said. “The animals in our impound have reduced dramatically. I think this year I want to say we had 37 ... and that number has consistently dropped since we initiated the program, of close to a couple hundred. So great successful story there. I think we’ve lowered our care in custody expenses and done a great thing by allowing these animals to be fostered out as much as we possibly can.”
About half of the animals were adopted to new homes, while just under half were reunited with their original owners, in large part because of increased dog licensing, said City Administrator Shelly Badger.
Councilor Mike McGowan said the city’s partnership with the animal alliance was a “win-win-win” for the pets, public works staff, and for the city in terms of lower staff expense.
“I think it’s a fine example of (a) municipality working in partnership and I think it’s really been great. So hats off to all on this one,” he said.