Manatee County takes over Bishop SPCA property

Manatee County takes over Bishop SPCA property
Posted on 03/15/2022

MANATEE COUNTY, FL (March 15, 2022) – Manatee County has officially taken over the management and operation of the Bishop Animal Shelter from the Bishop Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Manatee County. 

The donation of the site – located at 5718 21st Avenue West – was coordinated through the County’s Animal Services Department and members of the Bishop Board. It estimated to be worth $18 million – including 14.47 acres, an almost 25,000 square foot state-of-the-art medical/intake facility, the original adoption center, a house and other personal property. The agreement stipulates that the county will operate the shelter with a 90% live release rate, and limits operations to the care and maintenance of animals. 

“We are overwhelmed by the generosity of this gift,” said Manatee County Animal Services Division Chief Sarah Brown. “We are excited about the expansion of Animal Services to a third location, and the care we will be able to provide to the animals.”

County coordination of the three facilities – Cat Town (216 6th Avenue East, Bradenton), Palmetto Animal Services (305 25th Street West, Palmetto) and the Bishop Animal Shelter – begins today (March 15, 2022). The new shelter will be used as an intake facility because of its extensive veterinary facilities This means all stray animals, Lost and Found animals, Bite Quarantines, Injured Strays and animals involved in any field investigation case will also stay at that facility.   

Beginning March 22, 2022, residents who have lost their pet–  or have found a stray – will need to visit the Bishop facility. The Palmetto Shelter will remain open for adoptions only.

“Manatee County has proven that we are a champion of animal welfare,” said Manatee County Commissioner Carol Whitmore. "The Bishop Foundation saw that, and were so impressed with the comprehensive animal welfare program started in 2011 that they approached us to continue their original mission.”

The gift provides a substantial property, additional sheltering space with a very thoughtful design – including easy to clean kennels, isolation rooms (which exist on a very limited scope in Palmetto), digital x-ray, an interior turf yard, substantial storage, and a surgical suite.

“This state-of-the-art facility is a game changer for the County and the pets we serve,” said Animal Services Chief Brown.