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The original item was published from 1/28/2019 4:15:00 PM to 2/9/2019 12:00:13 AM.

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County News

Posted on: January 22, 2019

[ARCHIVED] RCACP Receives $5,000 Grant from PetSmart Charities for Pet Microchip Program

(ROANOKE, VA - January 22, 2019)   The Regional Center for Animal Care and Protection (RCACP) recently received a $5,000 grant from PetSmart Charities, the leading funder of animal welfare in North America, designed to help keep more people and pets together in the Roanoke Valley.  

Many times lost animals are brought into the shelter with no means of identifying their owners. When an owner cannot be located, the animal must stay at the shelter for a specified period of time to allow the owner time to locate the animal. As an open intake shelter, the need for space is a daily concern for staff and also for the community.  This grant will allow RCACP to work with area animal control agencies to quickly identify animals that have an owner and return that animal to its loving home as soon as possible.   

With the help of this new grant, RCACP is committed to offering solutions that will return pets to their loving homes and families quickly.  In 2018, RCACP received approximately 4,500 animals into the shelter that were either lost or owner surrendered.  Of that number, only 25 percent were actually redeemed by their owners.  This grant will assist the community twofold; by providing free microchip installation at the shelter for dogs and cats being redeemed and portable microchip scanners to the area animal control agencies for use in the field. 

“Currently, when an animal is adopted from our facility, we ensure that it leaves the building with a microchip with its other vetting.  By providing access to free microchip installation for those animals that are redeemed by their owners, we are providing another safety net for the animal should it become lost in the future,” said Mike Warner, Interim Executive Director.  “In addition, microchip scanners have been provided to our four local animal control agencies (City of Roanoke, Counties of Botetourt and Roanoke, and the Town of Vinton) so that officers can scan lost animals in the field and potentially reunite them with owners prior to bringing them to the shelter.  We are hopeful that this grant will reduce the number of animals impounded through Animal Control intervention and also reduce the amount of time that a lost animal stays in the shelter after impound.”  

Pet retention is just one of PetSmart Charities’ seven grant categories.  Funding from PetSmart Charities supports animal welfare organizations and non-profits committed to reducing pet homelessness and enhancing the human-animal bond. For more information, visit  
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