County seeks to buy airport property for Hickman County animal shelter

Local News

HICKMAN COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – Any pooches path to a new home, from the streets of Hickman County, isn’t easy.

“Every day we get messages of dogs roaming, dogs dumped,” explained Susan Lonardelli, with Pawz-N-Clawz K9 Retreat. “Because there’s no shelter.”

Hickman County lacks a county animal shelter, and neighbors have reported animals roaming free for years.

Just three years ago, News 2 covered the phenomenon, with sightings of packs of dogs on the loose.

Shelter Friends of Hickman County hopes to make this problem a thing of the past, as they search for a five-acre plot of land for a new shelter.

Their proposed site though is causing concern.

“This plot has a six-foot chain-link fence in place, with barbed wire,” noted Becki Bates, president of the group. “It’s flat, very little grading will be needed, and most importantly it has the infrastructure, sewer, water, electric.”

But the plot is owned by the city of Centerville and it’s technically part of airport property.

“Therefore it comes under regulations of the Tennessee Aeronautics Division, and the FAA,” explained Centerville Mayor, Gary Jacobs.

Additionally, the city has its own animal shelter.

Mayor Jacobs told News 2 he certainly understands the need for a county shelter, but he’s unsure if, or how, the city could sell the plot.

“It’s not a simple matter of turning over a piece of property,” he added. “It’s the most complex piece of property the city has, anything doing with the airport.”

A county resolution passed this week, seeking to buy the property, will soon go before city officials.

In the meantime, more than 78 dogs and counting will continue to be fostered out.

County leaders will present their resolution to the city, during an aldermen meeting Nov. 12.

“Best way you can support us that night, be there in person,” said Bates. “Hear the discussion, hear how the support goes.”

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