VICTORVILLE – The interim homeless shelter at Westwinds Sports Center has completely filled its pet kennel, housing animals belonging to homeless individuals. The pet kennel helps eliminate pet ownership as a barrier of entry to the homeless shelter.
The San Manuel Band of Mission Indians provided a $50,000 grant, last year, to the city for the construction of the pet kennel.
Victorville Animal Care and Control Division repurposed a 40-foot-by-12-foot modular restroom into a climate-controlled pet kennel that includes an exam room, wash area and space for dogs and cats. It includes a fenced enclosure so only pet owners and shelter staff have access.
Since its March 2022 opening, the pet kennel has housed 14 dogs and 1 cat.
The Victorville Animal Care and Control Division aids with animal care, oversees critical care needs, and provides free training concerning proper pet care and maintenance to the shelter occupants. Policies are in place governing the number of pets to be housed in the kennel, vaccine requirements, safety protocols, flea and tick maintenance and client responsibility.
The interim shelter at Westwinds Sports Center will continue to house homeless individuals until the completion of the 170-unit Wellness Center Campus on First Street. The Wellness Center Campus is a part of the city’s Homelessness Solutions Action Plan designed to expand homeless outreach and prevention programs while increasing enhanced shelter operations and affordable housing.
The city contracts with non-profit Illumination Foundation to operate the 92-bed interim shelter.
Community members who are interested in volunteering at the pet kennel or who would like to make a donation of food or supplies to support the kennel operations are invited to reach out to the Illumination Foundation at 949-273-0555.