The city of Fort Worth Animal Care & Control Department has collaborated with Spay Neuter Network to develop a program that focuses on getting people the resources they need to keep their pets or redirecting them to rehoming opportunities.

The details

According to a city news release, the community intake program rolled out on March 25 with full implementation planned for April 1.

The news release states a resident must first make an appointment before they can surrender their animal. The process includes a two-week waiting period during which a Spay Neuter Network representative will contact the resident to discuss reasons for the surrender and explore an array of potential resources that could help them keep their pet. Staff will provide ongoing support for residents who need it, including help with food, medical care and rehoming.

“This approach should ultimately lead to improved live-release rates and better outcomes for the animals under our care,” Code Compliance Assistant Director Chris McAllister said.

According to the news release, scheduling intakes and exploring potential alternatives to pet care—including finding foster families who can keep the pets in their home—keeps kennels open for other animals.

“In shelters nationwide, space is a constant challenge,” McAllister said. “By implementing community intake, we can collaborate with our residents and partners to explore alternative solutions for even more pets in need.”

The news release states emergency surrenders will still be accommodated for urgent situations such as injured animals or bite cases.

Quote of note

“The community intake program represents a proactive step toward fulfilling our mission of keeping pets and people together by exploring diverse options to facilitate it,” McAllister said. “It ensures that every pet gets the care and attention they deserve, from their time in the shelter to finding their forever homes.”