Faithful Friends breaks ground on new, bigger facility
Rescued cats and dogs will soon have a nicer place to stay in New Castle County.
Elected officials joined Faithful Friends Animal Society staff and donors Tuesday for a groundbreaking ceremony at the organization’s new site near the New Castle airport.
The 27-acre plot was a land grant gift from the state to the nonprofit that operates a no-kill shelter and community veterinary clinic—as well as advocates for legislative change. Faithful Friends has also raised more than $6 million for the project.
The new center will have more than 17,000 square feet of space specifically designed for animals, unlike Faithful Friends’ current shelter in Wilmington.
It’ll also have walking trails, a large play area and a veterinary wing.
“Right now we’re in a very cramped building that we don’t own. We lease it,” said Faithful Friends Executive Director Jane Pierantozzi. “With the new facility, we’ll have a better space for the dogs and cats. [It'll be] modern, better HVAC system, plumbing. It’ll be new. It’ll be made for animals, with lots of natural lighting.”
Pierantozzi says the new facility will allow the organization to ramp up its operations.
“Usually we rescue about 1,500 animals a year, and we think we can probably do a 50% increase in the new facility,” she said.
The new facility is expected to open next fall. The organization still needs to raise around $3 million.
New Castle County Executive Matt Meyer spoke at the groundbreaking, praising Faithful Friends for helping feed and care for pets at the county-owned homeless shelter known as the Hope Center.
"We called on Faithful Friends in that time of need, and they came through more than anyone could ever ask," he said.