Frightened and stressed meows and barks filled the waiting room of a shelter in Houston, Texas. A line formed and ran out the building of people with carriers and leashes in hand, but they were not there to adopt. Instead, the line was for owners who were there to surrender their pets.
Harris County Animal Shelter in Houston, Texas, is over their max capacity of 200 after a surge of owner surrenders last week. They currently have over 500 dogs and cats looking for loving homes, and sadly more owner surrenders are coming in daily.
Most of the owners who surrendered their pets, stated they “no longer wanted the pet or could no longer care for them.” Lifestyle changes were the most common reason with a few stating that the dog was a stray that they found.
The shelter workers were devastated by all the pets coming in. They posted, “There is a 2 1/2 hr wait today to surrender an animal at Harris County Animal Shelter. That is how many animals we are receiving!”
They went on to say, “If people can’t wait or don’t want to wait they tying them up to a tree and leaving or abandoning them in a box in our parking lot.
We are now at 534 animals in care! There are 5-6 animals to a kennel. We need your support to maintain a 90% lifesaving rate.”
The shelter is beyond capacity and in desperate need of fosters and adopters. They can no longer accept any more cats and are pleading for help. They posted, “One person surrendered 20 cats today. Our cats are at risk and we urgently need people to adopt or foster for a few days to a couple weeks.
Cats make easy fosters, because they pretty much take care of themselves. We can help with supplies like food and a litter box. A spare bathroom can make for nice accommodations for a foster cat!”
Urgent Shelter Pets wrote, “This is the daily reality for us in Houston. Many people find our unwanted pet epidemic hard to grasp. This video will hopefully shed a little light on what we are dealing with. This man drug SIX dogs into the shelter with his TEN year old son, surrendering them because they were ‘moving’. All of which could have been avoided had their dog likely been spayed/neutered from the beginning.”
Warning: This video will break your heart.
Animal lovers in the community stepped up and 66 animals were adopted or fostered. However, they still have hundreds more that are in need of rescue. Please share this story to help all these innocent pets find loving homes.
Please spay and neuter your pets and remember to adopt not shop! There are so many loving pets just waiting in shelters around the country for a forever home. If you cannot make a lifetime commitment to a pet, then consider fostering one to help save a life.
“If less than two percent of pet-owning households in the U.S. fostered one pet a year, we could eliminate unnecessary euthanasia in animal shelters.”
Andrea Powell is an animal enthusiast that resides in West Michigan. When not writing, she is exploring the great outdoors with her dogs and horses.
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