Staff at Greater Moncton’s SPCA say they’re struggling to keep animals warm this winter with frigid temperatures and an ageing building.
In the past week alone, staff says they’ve made two emergency calls to repair heating systems in the nearly 40-year-old building.
The SPCA’s executive director, Dave Rogers says they can’t keep the building heated without a new boiler and the cost could range from $10,000 to $20,000.
“When the system gets to full capacity with this cold snap, its burning wires off of electrodes and the heating elements are burning,” says Rogers.
He says while the building's shifting structure and leaky roof needs to be addressed, staff are mainly focused on the building’s lack of insulation.
“Down in the kitten room, we have two kennels on the outside wall and we can't use them because the wall gets so cold, the poor little kittens would freeze to death.”
In 2017, the SPCA took in 500 more animals than the year before with 350 of them being cats coming from across New Brunswick, Northern Nova Scotia, and Prince Edward Island.
Rogers says despite the difficulties he’s confident they’ll get a new building in the future.
“We're looking at 2018 being the year to finally make the decision,” he says. “I'd like to be sitting in my office in the new building two years from today. I think that's a reality. I think in 2019 we could start construction and be into the new building by Christmas.”
Besides a $1 million bequest from an area resident, donations to the SPCA charitable foundation, and a promised contribution from the city of Moncton, the group says it will also appeal to Dieppe, Riverview, to help fund a new $5.8 million building.
Rogers says if those funds raise roughly half the total cost, they should be able to go ahead with construction.
“We'll be saving on operational costs, costs of heat, costs of electricity, costs of maintenance, we'll be saving those funds every year.”
With an estimated five years left until the current building requires a costly major renovation, the SPCA says it hopes it will have a reason to celebrate soon.
With files from CTV Atlantic’s Cami Kepke.