PAWS to Implement “Managed Admissions” for Owner Surrendered Animals

Starting October 1 2016, PAWS will implement a new system for accepting owner surrender animals. Instead of coming to the shelter to surrender a pet, we will now require the owner to first call or email PAWS to schedule an appointment.

Our obligations to the community will not change: PAWS will still be an open admission shelter and we will not turn away animals for health or behavior reasons. We will now merely require an appointment before bringing in your owner surrender pet.

At PAWS, we are constantly evolving and re-evaluating what we do so that we can save more lives. By following models that have proven successful at numerous shelters throughout the country, we are confident that transitioning to managed admissions will let us plan and prepare, instead of react. In this way, we can better control our shelter’s animal population and reduce overcrowding, thereby saving more lives and better assisting Bourbon County’s stray and abandoned animals.

We welcome any comments, questions, or concerns via our email at For more information, please refer to the FAQ in this article or visit our website at We appreciate in advance the community’s understanding and patience as we transition to this new model.

What is Managed Admissions?

Having managed admissions means that the public will call or email to schedule an intake appointment before surrendering a pet. Even with managed admissions, we will continue to be an open-admission shelter. Knowing when animals come to our shelter helps PAWS better allocate resources while also streamlining admissions for the public. It also provides PAWS the opportunity to help an owner keep its pet, if possible.

How will this new process work?

If you need to surrender your pet, first call or email our shelter. We will ask some questions about the animal, including age, reason for surrendering, and whether or not the pet is sterilized. You will then be given an appointment to bring in your pet. We will do our best to accommodate your schedule and get an appointment as quickly as possible. Please be aware that during our busy season (mid to late summer) our shelter remains full and there may be a brief waiting period.

What happens in the event the pet is in danger or distress?

We will automatically accept an animal if there is ever a question about safety of the pet or person.

We found a stray and need to bring it to PAWS. Do we need to make an appointment?

We still ask that you call or email first so that we can be prepared to accept the animal.

Won’t people just dump or abandon their animal with these new admission policies?

Managed admission programs have been implemented in countless shelters throughout various communities. In those areas, there is no evidence supporting an increase of stray or abandoned animals after implementing this new policy. We also believe our community wants to do the right thing for their pet, regardless if they are no longer able to adequately care for it. Finally, we have a collaborative relationship with Animal Control and the Bourbon County Sheriff Department; any person found dumping an animal will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law.

Comments Closed