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Pet project grows out of partnership

Warner Bros. helps Burbank Animal Shelter by allowing more money to go to pet care and adoption.

July 22, 2011|By Joyce Rudolph
  • President of volunteers Denise Fleck plays with Mojo in the new pet play area that has new concrete, a blue tarp cover and new paint at the Burbank Animal Shelter at the shelter in Burbank on Thursday, July 21, 2011. (Tim Berger/Staff Photographer)
President of volunteers Denise Fleck plays with Mojo…

A year ago, the Warner Bros. facilities department was looking for a pet project to give back to the community. The Burbank Animal Shelter fit the bill.

“We went over with them all the things we needed, and they were able to do a lot,” said Denise Fleck, president of the Volunteers of the Burbank Animal Shelter.

One of the major improvements the studio department made, Fleck said, was pouring a concrete slab in the dogs’ play area and covering the area with a shade cloth. The space is also used for meet-and-greets when family members and their dogs are introduced to a prospective pet.

The 1,100-square-foot area remained unused for several months after Parvovirus was discovered in the soil. Now shelter staff can clean the concrete with bleach, something you can’t do with dirt, Fleck said.

Another update the facilities department made was adding shelving on a wall in the lobby and a flat-screen TV monitor that flashes information like adoption rates. Prior to the flat screen, adoption rates and other shelter information were displayed on a magnetic board the staff had to manually change.


“Warner Bros. moved us into the 21st century,” Fleck said.

The studio’s facilities department chose to partner with the Volunteers of the Burbank Animal Shelter because department officials had heard from fellow employees about what a dedicated group it is, said Jon Gilbert, president of the department.

“Many of us are animal lovers who feel for the plight of abandoned pets, especially during times of economic hardship when many pets have been separated from their owners,” he said.

The facilities department oversees the operations of the main Burbank studio and the Burbank Ranch, including its production and post-production departments. It has made about $40,000 worth of improvements to the shelter, he said. Several studio vendors, such as California Paving, also contributed at the department’s request.

Facilities employees installed electrical access for an X-ray machine donated by the Feline Conservation Center in Rosamond, Calif. They also replaced a metal roof with a canvas shade cover and added a row of mist machines over the cages in the rabbit compound.

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