I am sorry you had a bad experience at the Bella Vista Animal Shelter. I see by the date of your review it was well over a year ago. They were just finishing up a massive fund raiser and building project expanding their newer facility at that time. The BVAS is extremely low kill and the staff gets very attached to each and every animal that ends up in their care. They're also protective in a way I've never known a shelter to be. They do not do same day adoptions--which is sometimes puzzling to potential adoptive families who want same day acquisitions. All applications--even those of their volunteers--are thoroughly checked to ensure that their charges end up in the best situations possible. The staff there deals with many other situations than just the pets brought to them by Animal Control. They assist with puppy mill break-ups, cases of abuse and animal collecting, dumped dogs and cats, and dispense food and litter to those families in need, all while tending to an absolute overflow of dogs and cats. I've been in some pretty ratty animal shelters and the BVAS is by far the cleanest and most organized I've seen. They are at capacity most of the time--but each animal is cared for. If you have not been there lately, give the place another chance. I just adopted from there and the staff was wonderful to both of us.
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I adopted a cat around Thanksgiving, and I have to say that I had a pretty good experience. I asked where the cats were and the man gave me directions to the next building. I could tell he was busy, but when he finished, he came and found me in one of the cat rooms. He answered my questions about a particular cat, and he helped me fill out the paperwork. A few days later, I got a call saying I was approved for adoption. I ended up adopting a cat from the main office (love him!). It was obvious that the staff cared for the animals. I appreciate the fact that they check to make sure the animal is going to a good home. The office lady recommended a good vet clinic for my cat, and was overall very pleasant and helpful. The shelter was clean both times I was there, and all animals had food, water, and clean areas. I would--and probably will--adopt from this shelter in the future.
We could not have asked for a better experience in adopting our 2 puppies. We applied through Petfinder, were screened thoroughly and got the call several days later saying we'd been chosen. We drove 8 hours each way to get them. The staff could not have been nicer! They have qualifications for pets to be adopted and maybe those who feel differently than I do, did not have a good match for that pet. Cannot imagine them being anything but caring and helpful.