New Seattle Humane facility opens in Bellevue

Pups and cats were moved into their new temporary homes Tuesday at the brand new Seattle Humane facility in Bellevue.  It’s the result of seven years of hard work and raising $28 million.

“This is totally surreal,” CEO David Lowe told KIRO 7.  “And I'm a guy so I'm not supposed to cry, but this is one of those tears of joy kind of moments.”

Loewe adopted a cat here 10 years ago, started volunteering, and now he's the CEO who oversaw the major upgrade.  The contrast is stark between the new facility in Bellevue and the old one on the same property along Eastgate Way.  Lowe explained that the new ventilation system is state of the art and will keep animals healthier.

“What's really innovative about this -- you see the small holes that are drilled (into the cat cubbies),” Lowe said.  “The ventilation in the air comes into the main space in the room. It's actually drawn through the holes and is vented up and out the back area of the cage. So there's never any common litter box smell when you see a lot of animals in a room.”

Another new feature, when you come to adopt an animal at the new facility you're going to meet the animal in its own room which is much bigger.  The animal will already be in there and that way you're coming into its space. And the vets say that's key for better interaction between you and the animal.

There's a new, large turf area for exercise.  One of the biggest upgrades is the veterinary clinic.  The surgery suites in the old facility were cramped and one was in a converted closet.  The new shelter has much bigger surgery suites and equipment that will allow more complicated procedures.

“More lives saved,” Seattle Humane Medical Director Jessica Reed said.  “Higher quality medical care, more animals that'll be available for adoption and not have to wait for space in the shelter.”

The new facility will allow Seattle Humane to serve 10,000 animals a year, up from $6,500.  They can take in more animals from the region and even out of state.

“Every life saved is times two,” Lowe said.  “We free up an uncertain future from an animal that might be there. And that gives them space to bring in another animal they might not have had space for.”

You can adopt the cats and pups in the new facility starting Wednesday.

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