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Puppies On Parade: Animal Rescue League Moves Into New Homewood Facility

Virginia Alvino Young
90.5 WESA
Animal Rescue League Volunteers walked shelter dogs down Dallas Street in Homewood to the organization's new facility.

To make the move to its new space, the Animal Rescue League paraded dogs, wagons full of cats and even a snake two blocks down Hamilton Avenue in Homewood Monday.  

Chief Executive Officer Dan Rossi said the old, smaller facility was always over capacity.

“We seem to be doing better with canines, cats is a different story,” Rossi said. “The demand continues to just expand there. Really, the only way to solve that is for good spay/neuters moving forward. That’s part of the idea with the new clinic. We’ve doubled our surgery space so we’ll be able to do even more spays and neuters.”

Credit Virginia Alvino Young / 90.5 WESA
90.5 WESA
On ribbon-cutting day, visitors check out the new cat facilities at the Animal Rescue League's new Homewood location.

The new, purpose-built facility can house twice as many dogs and three times as many cats as the previous location. Rossi said it’s the largest urban-based shelter in the United States, at 35,200 square feet

The shelter cost $15 million to build. Rossi said the organization still owes about $3 million. 

The facility features an outdoor cat garden, exercise space for dogs and a retail shop.

Earlier this year, the Animal Rescue League merged with the Western Pennsylvania Humane Society, which Rossi said offers more flexibility in animal housing, as well. 

Virginia reports on identity and justice for 90.5 WESA. That means looking at how people see themselves in the community, and how the community makes them feel. Her reporting examines things like race, policing, and housing to tell the stories of folks we often don't hear from.
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