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Public invited to animal shelter ribbon cutting, open house

The City of Auburn and Auburn Valley Humane Society host a ribbon cutting ceremony at the new Auburn Valley Humane Society (AVHS) shelter on Saturday, 11:30 a.m. to noon. The shelter is at 4910 A St. SE, Auburn, is open to the public.

An open house will follow the ribbon cutting until 4 p.m.  The first 150 visitors will receive a pet goody bag from AVHS. Next door at Ilalko Elementary School gymnasium, Auburn Riverside students are sponsoring a “Pawsitivity Animal Fair” from 12-4 p.m. to benefit the new shelter and promote pet licensing in the city.

“We’re all very excited about bringing our animal services program back home to Auburn,” said Mayor Pete Lewis. “We’re calling on all Auburn pet owners to license their cat or dog. It’s not only the law, but all pet license fees will go directly back to sustain the animal shelter and its programs.”

That wasn’t always the case. Prior to Jan. 1, before the City took over animal services from King County the City was notified that fees for County animal services would be raised from $100,000 a year to $600,000. In addition, the County Animal Services Officer which had been servicing 30 square miles would have to cover 300 square miles under a renewed County contract.

“It seemed to us that Auburn citizens would be getting diminished service at the same time King County was raising its animal service fees," Lewis said. "We began to look at a more economical model that would be more responsive to our community needs. The result is a partnership with AVHS to operate the shelter while the City manages pet licensing and animal control with our own Animal Control Officer.”

Auburn's new Animal Control Officer, George Winner, will be on hand to meet interested citizens.

Pet owners will also be able to license their dog or cat at the shelter during the open house and at the Pawsitivity Fair on Saturday. Licenses can be purchased anytime online at www.auburnwa.gov/pets, or in person Monday-Friday at the City Clerk’s office at Auburn City Hall; at the City’s Customer Care Counter on the secnd Floor of the City Annex at One Main Street; at the Parks, Arts & Recreation Administration Building, 909 Ninth St.; or at Auburn Valley Humane Society, 4910 A St.

Any pets licensed through King County’s program prior to Jan. 1, 2013 will be honored by the City of Auburn through the license expiration date. For more information about pet licensing call 253-804-5064. Contact AVHS at 253-249-7849 for lost pets or pet adoptions. Call 911 to report problem animals to Auburn Animal Control.

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