FORT WAYNE, IN – Reflecting on 2021, Fort Wayne Animal Care & Control continued to expand support programming to improve the quality of life for citizens and pets in the Fort Wayne community.
A pivotal change occurred in January that involved splitting the volunteer and foster coordinator position into two separate positions. This allowed the foster coordinator, along with the foster team, to focus strictly on the foster program and grow it to have a record-breaking year of lives saved.
The foster program expanded by 125 additional foster homes and saved the lives of 1,547 animals: up from 1,200 in 2020. The community’s willingness to help also allowed the shelter to save 180 neonatal kittens who require around the clock care.
This increase in the shelter’s foster program led to a need for increased adoptions, which resulted in yet another record-breaking year for the adoption program with 3,115 pets finding their forever homes.
The shelter completed the No Place Like Home Challenge in March which encouraged citizens of Fort Wayne to be proactive pet owners by ensuring their pets were microchipped, information was up-to-date, and they were familiar with what to do if their pet goes missing. This contributed to a notable Return to Home rate of 59% for dogs and 8% for cats. This may seem low, but it is significantly higher than national averages at 17% for dogs and 2.5% for cats, according to national database Shelter Animals Count.
In a continued effort to build a kinder, more humane community full of animal advocates, the shelter’s humane education team expanded their educational programs for children. Instead of two weeks of summer camp, six weeks are now offered, in addition to the creation of one-day fall, winter, and spring break camps.
As the largest open access animal shelter in Northeast Indiana, Fort Wayne Animal Care & Control has an immense responsibility to maintain public safety while saving as many lives as possible. FWACC cannot turn any animal away even if kennel space is full.
This is what drives the shelter to become better every single day for the community and their pets. FWACC could not continue to have record-breaking years without the community’s support.
In 2022, FWACC will strive to continue to be a positive resource for the citizens of Fort Wayne, the animals that have nowhere else to go, and for the animals in their homes where they are already loved.
Visit fwacc.org to learn more about Fort Wayne Animal Care & Control.
Animal Care 2021 Statistics:
- 10,686 animals (1,042 is wildlife) came to the shelter in 2021
- 1,908 animals returned to their owners
- 1,589 animals surrendered to the shelter by their owners
- 1,047 animals transferred to rescues/other shelters
- 918 Community Cats returned to colonies
- 3,115 animals adopted
- 1,551 animals sent to foster homes
- 200 active foster families
- 11,377 volunteer hours
- 291 active volunteers
- 2,472 animals euthanized at owner’s request and for medical or behavioral reasons
- $10,000 grant from The Kitten Lady – Orphan Kitten Club to support the foster program
- $1,500 individual kitten grant from Orphan Kitten Club to save Cece, a kitten who needed surgery on both of her eyes
- $25,000 grant from Best Friends Animal Society to cover the cost of additional life-saving staff and supplies for the foster program
Community Outreach Data and Highlights from 2021:
- Animal Control Officers responded to 19,123 calls for service
- Animal Control Officers responded to 1,822 calls of suspected animal cruelty and neglect
- Eight offsite adoption locations for adoptable cats that allowed more space in the shelter
- FWACC became Orphan Kitten Club partners
- 780 children participated in the shelter’s humane education programs
- FWACC staff witnessed a reunion between a dog missing for eight years and his owners thanks to a microchip
- 34.87% of pet owners who made appointments to surrender their pet decided to keep their pet or rehome outside of the shelter after receiving services through FWACC’s pet retention program