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Breaking Ground on Calvert County’s First Animal Shelter

Construction underway for 2018 grand opening

From left: Comissioners Mike Hart, Steven R. Weems, Tom Hejl, and Pat Notter; Rick Bailey, Eric Bailey, Commissioner Evan Slaughenhoupt Jr., Crystal Dowd, Terry Shannon, George Stewart, Wilson Parran, Jay Webster and Jackie Vaughan.
     Thirteen shovels dug into the ochre clay to break ground for Calvert County’s first animal shelter. Rising at 5055 Hallowing Point Road in Prince Frederick is a main shelter building of 12,910 square feet to house up to 200 animals plus a 1,380 square-foot barn to shelter livestock.
     The shelter’s namesake, former county commissioner Linda Kelley, would like that, as her fellowship with animals extended to potbellied pigs, which she kept as pets.
     A Friend of Felines, Kelley would also appreciate the shelter’s catering to cats. Adoptable cats will live in new condos where living space is separate from litter space. Felines will also prowl a cat patio and a free-roam room where they can be watched from the main lobby. 
      Dogs get high quality quarters, too, including seven kennels linking to a viewable dog room plus two larger adoptable-dog rooms with access to fenced-in play yards and indoor and outdoor meet-and-greet areas.
     Exotic animals get their own room, also viewable from the main lobby. 
     Animals of all sorts enjoy plenty of amenities, including dedicated grooming and bathing space for makeovers and enrichment programs.
       The shelter, expected to open next year, will be open admissions, receiving owner-surrendered and stray animals in Calvert County and providing continuing compassionate humane care and treatment for all healthy and treatable animals.       The mission includes adoption and public education. 
      Only terminally ill animals or those considered dangerous will be euthanized.
      The shelter will create 10 new jobs for humans, including Crystal Dowd, shelter division chief, and a coordinator of the many volunteers who’ll be needed to carry out the mission. It is being built with an option to purchase in a public/private partnership with 46 Calvert Industrial LLC. and Marrick Properties.
       With the 2018 opening of the Linda L. Kelly Animal Shelter, Calvert will end its investment in the aging Tri-County Animal Shelter at Hughesville.