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NYC Comptroller: AC&C Has Made Improvements, But More Needed

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- An audit of New York City's Animal Care & Control found the animal shelter system is working to improve the safety and health of animals and staff, but that more still needs to be done.

Comptroller John Liu released the findings of the audit on Thursday, which was a followup to one that was completed back in 2006.

In that audit five years ago, the comptroller's office called for several changes in the AC&C, including:

  • More spot cleaning of adoption shelters
  • Making sure shelters have adequate medical staff
  • Separating sick and healthy animals
  • Giving dogs more exercise
  • Improving shelter security
  • Improving investigations of foster care animals missing from shelters

Liu's report found that since 2006, the AC&C has made many of the changes while others still need work.

Getting more volunteers to help walk dogs for example, have improved throughout the shelter system, but the audit says dogs still aren't being walked regularly enough.

Shelter security has also improved, but audit said the agency still doesn't have reliable reports about missing animals or the ability to know the actual location of an animal in the shelter.

The audit also found while the AC&C had improved it adoption process, underfunding means a continued shortage of medical staff and medical treatment for animals.

In order to keep improving conditions for both employees and animals, the comptroller's office made ten recommendations in the 2011 audit, including:

  • Keeping sick and healthy animals apart
  • Develop a written dog-walking policy
  • Focus their resources on animals that been at shelter for a long time
  • Modify its Missing Animal Tracking policy
  • Outline procedures of missing foster care animal cases.

The report said that AC&C officials "generally agreed with nine of the 10 recommendations and described the actions to be taken to address them."

But the audit said the AC&C didn't agree with the finding that there isn't enough medical staff to meet the medical needs of animals.

To read the full audit, click here.

The AC&C has shelters in all five boroughs.

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