One week after experiencing a fire, the Christian County Animal Shelter will be open to receiving animals again.
The animal shelter, located at 2935 Russellville Road, will begin receiving animals between 10:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. today through Friday, and 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Saturday.
However, the shelter will not be able to house the same number of animals it used to. Where it could take in up to 225 animals before the fire, the shelter will now be at half capacity and only able to house between 150 to 175 until it finishes reconstruction. People who have volunteered to foster animals will hold onto them for another two months.
“We’ve just been trying to get all those cages empty so we can have as much room as possible for what’s getting ready to come in,” said Irene Grace, director for the shelter, “and probably just trying to settle down a little bit.”
The shelter cleared out all of the animals in its care over the weekend. Grace said the shelter had 225 animals before the fire, and by Saturday only four dogs who could not be adopted were left.
A lot of the animals were taken in through Max’s Hope Pet Rescue, Heaven Can Wait Rescue, and the Christian County, Henderson County and Bowling Green-Warren County chapters of the Humane Society. Many residents in and around Christian County also adopted and fostered animals in the wake of the fire.
“The community — you just can’t ask for a better community than what we’ve got here,” Grace said.
Though the cause of the fire is still unknown, the shelter will begin reconstruction immediately. Grace said contractors would begin tearing out the burned areas and rebuilding this week. She said the construction must be finished within 60 days.
The shelter still does not have full electricity.
In addition to taking in displaced animals, the community has pulled together to give in other ways. Grace said people have donated year-round items of need, such as blankets and animal food. Local restaurants have even donated food for the shelter workers in the stressful time.
People from all over the country have also sent in monetary donations. Grace said she does not know exactly how much has been donated, but she estimates the shelter has received about $2,500.
Grace said the way the community has pulled together has been a relief for her and her staff during such a hectic and stressful time.
“It’s been a frenzied week,” Grace said. “It’s been a wonderful week — a miraculous week.”
REACH CARLA JIMENEZ at 270-887-3262 or firstname.lastname@example.org.