Meriden Humane Society makes big changes in effort to have city renew lease

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MERIDEN–After months of back-and-forth and scandal, including the removal and arrest of the director, the Meriden Humane Society says it is ready to move forward.

In a letter posted to the shelter’s Facebook page and sent to FOX 61, MHS announced a possible reversal in the original announcement that the lease for the current space would not be renewed by the city of Meriden.

According to MHS, the board of directors is now in direct communication with the city manager, and will meet in early December to discuss the future of MHS in its current location.

To that end, MHS has made several changes recently. The lease termination occurred due to issues found during city inspections, so MHS responded to the concerns: a major cleaning effort was undertaken; animals and equipment were moved out of the hallways and will no longer be stored in them; the ventilation system was cleaned; light fixtures were replaced; and dog kennels were repaired with the assistance of Meriden Animal Control.

In addition, MHS made some changes on its own.

First, it is temporarily suspending its practice of accepting surrendered animals so that the ones already at the shelter can be cared for. There are still three dogs and just under 100 cats that need forever homes, despite 17 cats and four long-term dogs being adopted recently.

Also, administrative practices were amended to ensure that communication about animal care was more streamlined.

And third, MHS called in a local veterinarian and animal care manager to inspect the facility and care practices to make further improvement recommendations.

MHS says its priority is to continue to operate as a no-kill shelter, and to that end there has been a continued stream in staff and volunteer coverage, despite recent setbacks.

To accomplish its goal of staying open, which it says it will do “even if we have to move,” MHS is asking for some help.

First, they need to pay off $30,000 in debt to local veterinarians and to Eversource for utilities. If you’d like to pay off those bills, contact these companies directly–they’ve all agreed to accept donations on MHS’ behalf: Eversource, VCA Cheshire Animal Hospital, VCA Shelton Animal Hospital, Piper Olson, East Side Vet Clinic and Central Hospital in North Haven.

Also, the shelter has created “wish lists” at Walmart and Amazon so that you can buy items they need. Click here for the Walmart wish list and here for the Amazon wish list. If you want to donate through those options, set the shipping name to (first name) Meriden Humane, (last name) Society, 311 Murdock Ave, Meriden.

Lastly, a GoFundMe page has been established, which you can find here.