Group trying to build animal shelter
Since last summer, Barbara Szepatowski and a group of animal-loving citizens, have been trying to turn the old garage behind the Town Offices on Southwest Avenue into an animal shelter for Jamestown’s homeless pets.
For the past six years, Szepatowski, a town councilwoman and the owner of pet supply shop Paws & Claws, has been a volunteer animal placement co-ordinator for the town. Often when a loose dog is found in town and the owner’s cannot be contacted, Szepatowski says. “I’ll end up driving around with it” for several hours until arrangements are made to reunite the dog with its family, she notes. When unwanted litters of kittens are born in town, it’s Paws & Claws that usually gets the call to come get them, Szepatowski says.
Jamestown does not have its own animal shelter, so any pets that come in are either placed with families or sent to the animal shelter in North Kingstown.
The town has offered up the old, ramshackle building, and has agreed to pay for water, sewer, and electricity at the new facility.
“We need everything,” Szepatowski says about the construction effort, noting that she is co-ordinating a list “like a wedding gift registry” that includes all building materials that will be needed to complete the job.
People can call Paws & Claws to ask what is still needed, Szepatowski says, adding that “we’ll take money” as well as supplies.
The current plan is to have the shelter up and running by Valentine’s Day, Szepatowski says.