Hawkinsville / Pulaski Animal Control

I am very embarrassed to admit that although I have been on the city council some 13 years, I had never visited our animal control shelter.   A few weeks ago, our office cat went missing so my wife Vonnie went to the shelter to see if Butch Chafin (our animal control officer) had picked him up.   He had not but Vonnie came home upset about the number of animals at our shelter.   Butch does a good job but we (the city and county) have not given him the tools, resources, knowledge, or facilities to run that shelter in a first class manner.   There are too many dogs for the number of cages, cats are in the same building, adoption procedures need to be improved, and some animals were reaching end of their allotted “time.”.

So this put Vonnie on a mission.  And when Vonnie is on a mission, guess what?  Shelly is on a mission.    I visited the facility and then visited a great facility in Cochran in order to compare.      We have LOTS of room for improvement.   However, I want to let everyone know that improvements have already started – things work SLOWLY in government but great things ARE going to happen.

  1.  Vonnie got a great home for one of the dogs and then posted pictures of the other dogs and that got re-posted on Facebook.   Now several of the dogs have been adopted.
  2. Fencing is being donated to the city and our workers will install the fencing at the facility in order to give the dogs a place to run and provide a holding pen.
  3. We are taking a large portable building there and will convert it to the cat facility in order to separate the dogs and cats. (Update:  We are adding to the existing structure rather than moving this portable building)
  4. We have pronounced our facility as a NO KILL shelter.
  5. One of my fellow commissioners has gone and visited the facility in Perry.   We plan on having ALL commissioners visit our facility as a group in January.
  6. We plan on working with groups such as the one in Cochran to get plans and procedures in place to get all animals adopted and cared for.
  7. All animals will be posted on a city maintained animal control Facebook page to help adoptions and lost pets.
  8. We will find some training for our animal control officer to attend.
  9. I plan on putting in next year’s budget (July 2018 – June 2019) enough money to renovate/expand our facility and make it TOP NOTCH.   We will improve the conditions.

Hawkinsville is a first class community and even our feline and canine citizens deserve first class care.

About Shelly Berryhill

I am a serial entrepreneur. My interests include website building, monetization of websites, and local politics.

Posted on December 8, 2017, in Hawkinsville Posts and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink. 15 Comments.

  1. I’m so relieved and happy to hear that the local government will improve the facilities. You might want to ask Dr. Bembry about the possibility of sterilization. There were way too many dogs and cats in the facility 12 years ago.
    Thanks for taking on this important mission.


  2. Thank you Shelly, one of our dogs is from Cochran Shelter. I know you all have lots on your plate, but maybe you could give certain commissioners certain progects to report on at meeting. I have another issue , and am not even sure how or if you could help. Our last grand jury recommended lights at the jail. I have been out there at night and it is unsafe visitors and staff. It would be very easy for some one to hide and hurt someone. There are no lights at the entrance and along the drive to the jail. Please take time to visit at night , our law enforcement needs to be protected and our citizens. Thank you for your work in our community.


  3. I LOVE this! Thank you, Shelly!


  4. Clifton C. Pritchett

    Thank you for caring .


  5. Milton Suthgerlin

    sterilization is a must…..BEV and I have “adopted” many stray cats the past several years…not by choice….but, if we could catch them they went to Dr. Bembry’s and were “spayed or neutered” at our cost……I understand that there might be grants for this out there somewhere…..


  6. Thanks to Becky Rhodes posting photos of all the animals in the facility last Saturday I and one of my coworkers both adopted pets from there on Monday.
    I truly hope that there has been some type of heat put in there during this cold weather. There was a mama with seven new born puppies and Mr. Chaffin was putting them on blankets under a heat lamp.
    Thank you for visiting the facility and bringing attention to the needs. God bless


  7. How much is it to adopted a dog?


  8. Wonderful, Vonnie and Shelley!


  9. Marilyn M Allen

    Would you please post pictures of any dogs(small to medium). I had my miniature poodle put to sleep today. And I want another companion animal.


  10. This brings Happy Tears to me. I am so Happy to know this is a No Kill shelter. Thank you Shelly and Vonnie!!!


  11. Thank you Shelly for all the changes that are being made at the Animal Control Facility. It is long overdue, but at least progress is being made. Butch does a great job. However, he is only ONE person and works part-time. Well, let me rephrase that. He works FULL time on a PART-TIME salary. At least that is what I am told. These animals have to be taken care of seven days a week. Now that all these changes are being made, he has even more responsibility and more work to do. How is he supposed to answer his messages taken daily at the public safety building, patrol Hawkinsville/Pineview and pick up animals, wash kennels, bowls, towels, feed and water animals, empty litter boxes, exercise the dogs in the new fenced in area, adopt out animals, meet people at the facility to view or pick up their new pet, etc. all on a part time basis? Have you possibly considered hiring someone to stay at the facility to help with all of this? Even if they are only part-time? I know you asked for volunteers but it seems like the same person there daily would be a much better solution. They would know what needs to be done and would learn the new rules and regulations that are hopefully going to be put in place. Volunteers would constantly have to be told what to do and that is time consuming for Butch to have to explain this to a different person everyday. However, this is just a suggestion. Once again, thank you, and thank you to Vonnie for first putting this on Facebook and to all those that continued to put it on Facebook as well. I thank you and the animals thank you!!!


  12. Good morning,
    On my way passing through Hawkinsville I found an extremely emaciated bulldog. Of course I picked her up to give her food and some where warm to sleep. Unfortunately I am unable to care any further for her due have many dogs of our own and a 1 yr human baby, haha. I need help and my local shelter asked I reach out to your shelter for starters. Her demeanor tells me she was once someone’s pet and I am in hopes to find them or someone to help care for her. I am willing to help sponsor her medical needs to see she gets what she needs.


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