NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) — Hampton Roads animal shelters are calling on animal lovers to lend a serving to hand to their four-legged buddies. This comes as shelters throughout the nation are seeing a rise in animals coming in, however not going out.
“It’s a nationwide crisis that we’re all kind of in,” mentioned Peninsula Regional Animal Shelter Outreach Coordinator Tiffany Webb. “Animals are coming in faster than what we can get them out the door for adoption.”
She says it’s not pandemic pets which might be being taken again to shelters. It’s that fewer people are adopting, so animals are staying longer.
“In 2022, an adult is staying here about 23-24 days before it’s adopted,” Webb mentioned. “In 2021, it was only here about 20 days and in 2020, it was only here about 18 days.”
Those further days add up. Webb mentioned, “Those three to four days make a huge impact on resources for us to be able to care for them.”
Webb believes exterior elements, equivalent to gasoline costs and inflation, are probably main households to not consider pet adoption. She hopes issues change earlier than the shelter has to make powerful selections.
“If we don’t have the space to do anything, we do have to make that decision,” Webb mentioned. “Right now, shelters across the nation are dreading that moment. Some places without the resources that we have are facing that a lot sooner. We’re so fortunate that we’re not in that position, but tomorrow could be different, there could be a court case tomorrow. It changes every day and it’s a hard place to be.”
She hopes the summer time will likely be higher.
“I’m really hopeful that those families with children that are home for the summer, maybe they’ll be able to get involved more,” Webb mentioned. “So we might be able to balance with that whether it’s a volunteer or a foster or a field trip to help get the pets noticed.”
At the Norfolk Animal Care and Adoption Center, (NACC), employees says the shelter has been persistently full for weeks now.
Via electronic mail, NACC Operations Manager Jennifer Held mentioned, “That means that every single dog kennel is full with the dogs and there is not room for animals coming in. When space is tight, we reach out to our foster families and try to work with other partner shelters. We have luckily had some dogs go into fosters and get adopted but as soon as they leave more dogs take those spots.”
Held added that adoptions there have been sluggish, and residents are calling each day to give up animals.
“The majority of the animals coming in are not pandemic pets. The pets being brought in are due to things like landlords not allowing animals or moving out of the area and not taking the animals with them. Also, we have a high number of strays that are not being reclaimed by their owners,” Held mentioned.
Both Held and Webb encourage people to undertake or consider fostering.
You can be taught extra in regards to the Peninsula Regional Animal Shelter by clicking right here and be taught extra in regards to the Norfolk Animal Care and Adoption Center by clicking right here.