A three-year contract worth $1.33 million to run the animal shelter in Warrnambool has been given the OK by city councillors.
But councillor Peter Sycopoulis said the animal shelter was in dire need of a "very expensive" upgrade.
Last month it was revealed that the council had plans drawn up for a $900,000 dog pound upgrade which would be completed in two stages.
The project is yet to get the green light.
Cr Sycopoulis said an upgrade was needed in order for the shelter to function properly and conform to requirements.
He said there were very high costs to keeping Warrnambool's shelter operating to the standard that it does.
"I'm more than happy to pay my $70 pet registration fees because the alternative leads much to be desired," he said.
"If we can't keep the shelter going, then I don't like the alternative."
Cr Sycopoulis said there was anecdotal evidence that other shelters did not house their stray animals for the same length of time that Warrnambool does, which makes the cost of running the city's facility higher.
He said his three cats had come from the shelter, one of which made an appearance during the last Zoom council meeting.
During the first year of the shelter deal, it will cost the council $432,800 for the RSPCA to operate the Braithwaite Street shelter - something it has been doing for 25 years.
That will increase to $454,710 in the third year, and there is an option for the council to extend the contract for another two years.
The shelter has a team of 40 volunteers which looks after the 274 dogs and 511 cats that are impounded every year.
The latest data, from 2018-19, shows that there were 16 dogs euthanised and 109 cats during that year.
If we can't keep the shelter going, then I don't like the alternative- Cr Peter Sycopoulis
Acting infrastructure director Glenn Riddick said the shelter had a low rate of euthanasia with most animals kept there until they could be rehomed.
Cr Kylie Gaston said the service provided by the RSPCA was more costly than some other providers due to their values and their commitment to rehoming animals where possible rather than just being euthanised.
"This does come at a cost as animals are fed and cared for sometimes for extended periods of time until a new owner is found," she said.
Cr Gaston said the council needed to continue to educate and work with the community on responsible ownership and the ongoing commitment it required.
Mayor Tony Herbert said that the council had had to increase pet registration over the last couple of years to help cover costs.
He said the level of care the RSPCA put into caring for the animals and the time and effort it put into rehousing them was "incredible".
Cr Herbert said quite a few council who had tried to run their own pounds over the years, had reverted back to this model because it was very difficult for councils to maintain the high level of volunteers that the RSPCA is able to.
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