Upgrades are underway at Victoria Animal Control Shelter that could cost thousands

Thousands of dollars are estimated to redo floors

VICTORIA, Texas – Changes are underway for the Victoria Animal Control Shelter.

The shelter is currently gathering bids to have their floors completely redone, said Jose Flores with the Victoria Animal Control Shelter.

The floors will be epoxy, which are sealed so there’s no chance of infections being transmitted between animals, said Flores.

Flores mentioned this is something the shelter has needed.

He also commented that these changes to the shelter have no relation to some concerns residents have expressed in the shelter’s response to animal complaints in last week’s winter storm.

“People assumed no one from animal control was working, that wasn’t the case,” said Flores.

During the Polar Plunge, law enforcement asked residents to stay off the roads.

“During those times, our officer didn’t respond — was not able to respond to cruelty calls,” said Flores. “This was in terms of animals being left outside, however, typically even on weekends and holidays when we are not available — that job is typically handled by law enforcement.”

Both the Victoria County Sheriff’s Office and the Victoria Police Department respond to those calls during off hours, said Flores.

“Animal cruelty in itself, as a criminal charge has to be filed by a law enforcement officer because it’s written into the penal code and only a licensed Peace Officer in the State of Texas can enforce the penal code,” Flores continued.

Flores said that the shelter is getting a new heating system as well.

Power outages affected millions of Texans, including the animal shelter.

Flores said they were doing their best to keep the animals comfortable.

“Those [current] heaters are run electricity, once the power went out, our facility lost all ability to even heat the kennels,” said Flores.

Their facility was not meant to withstand below freezing temperatures, so they had to make due with the best they could.

Flores shared that several citizens stepped up, donated, lent the shelter several heaters and provided propane to the facility to be able to run the heaters.

Victoria Animal Control expects to have the bids to be able to remodel the floor turned over to Commissioner’s Court by next week for a possible approval.

Flores said they are still waiting for a second estimate to come in.

“It’s going to be a very large purchase,” said Flores. “The first [bid] that we got was [for more than $20,000 dollars], but that is from the very back of our shelter to the very front right as it goes into the office,” said Flores.

Flores also shared that they are always willing to accept people who want to volunteer over the age of 18.

“I know many of the staff would like to see a mural painted outside of our kennel, I would love to see it happen,” said Flores.