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New non-profit raises awareness and funds for new Campbell County animal shelter

Published: Jan. 13, 2021 at 6:38 AM EST
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CAMPBELL COUNTY, Va. (WDBJ) - There’s a new non-profit whose goal is to build a new animal shelter in Campbell County.

The current shelter has been in use since the ’80s and it’s starting to show decline, despite efforts from the staff and volunteers. It’s also small and can’t keep up with demand.

The Campbell County Animal Shelter is off Wards Road in Rustburg behind Yellow Branch Elementary School.

“Almost my entire life I’ve been in Campbell County and I’ll be honest, for a long time I didn’t even know about this shelter,” Jeannie Isaacs said.

She added that’s common among county residents.

“I’m finding that out a lot as I talk to the community about the shelter,” she said. “Not a lot of people know that one, it exists. Two, where it’s located. And they’re not aware that it’s the only shelter in Campbell County.”

Isaacs and Katie Lane founded BARCC, Bringing Animal Renovations to Campbell County in 2020 to be the “squeaky wheel” as they say, about the current condition of the shelter.

“Right now there’s only 17 dog runs. There’s a small cat room. And we need more,” Lane, the non-profit president, emphasized.

There’s only room for fewer than two and a half dogs per each of the seven districts before animals have to be sent to foster homes or other shelters.

“That’s one of the reasons why we’re encouraging a new shelter,” she said. “This has been just a little outdated and it needs to be updated tremendously for many reasons, for the animals and for us visiting.”

There’s not the quiet space for potential owners to meet dogs’ true personalities. Right now, there’s only a tight single hallway with dog runs on both sides that can be an overwhelming experience for adults and children.

“They’re just excited to see you,” Lane said. “And sometimes that translates as maybe a jumper when really they might not be a jumper. They’re just like, ‘Oh my goodness, a friend is here to see me!’”

Even the cats, stuck in their cages all day without space to roam around, get excited to see people... and catch their 15 seconds of fame as one cat did reaching for the camera.

“Animals are very selfless,” Katie said. “They will give you so much of themselves and they won’t ask for a lot in return.”

So whether you want to just visit or volunteer at the shelter, whether you want to advocate for the cause or donate money, Isaacs, Lane, the employees and the shelter’s unofficial welcoming committee, Whiskey the cat, will take all the help they can get.

You can follow BARCC on Instagram and on Facebook to learn more.

Wall murals decorate the Campbell County Animal Shelter.
Wall murals decorate the Campbell County Animal Shelter.(WDBJ7)

BARCC is a 501(c) and all donations are tax-deductible.

They’re working with the county administrators to see about funding, but say most of the money will need to be raised by the community.

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