Dog Rescue Shelter in Jeopardy - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Dog Rescue Shelter in Jeopardy

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YAKIMA, Wash. -- Elly and Bill Patnode have been caring for stray dogs at their home in Terrace Heights since 1969, but zoning codes could force them to stop.

In August, a neighbor filed a complaint, saying "barking can be heard in the surrounding area."

County zoning regulations prohibit the Patnodes from running a shelter, but they are attempting to prove that their rescue pre-dated the current zoning ordinance, which was passed in 1986.

A hearing was held Thursday morning at City Hall. Dog lovers from all over the county spoke in favor of their shelter, Barks R' Us.

"We'll be lost if they can't continue," says Animal Control Officer, Diane Seymour. "They place so many dogs that would have to be euthanized otherwise.

Elly Patnode estimates that they have saved 40,000 dogs.

Another hearing is scheduled for April 17th.