Shelter adoptions save lives
Sixty-one hearts are on the wall; 61 hearts are still beating happily. Sixty-one pets left the shelter during the February and the “Adopt the Love of your Life” event at the Haywood County Animal Shelter. Sixty-one healthy lovable pets have homes and avoided being euthanized for lack of room at the shelter.
“Our collective conscience can breathe a short sigh of relief,” said Penny Wallace, member of the No More Homeless Pets Initiative. “But we citizens need to keep adopting, rescuing and fostering pets from the shelter until there is no more need to euthanize these animals just to make room.”
When asked how she thought this could be achieved, Wallace gave the following list:
• If you have pets, don’t create more.
• Get your pet spayed or neutered. It is affordable for all through Haywood Spay/Neuter’s low-cost program.
• If you have a pet at home be sure that it wears a collar with rabies and ID tags.
• Better yet, have the pet micro-chipped. Haywood Spay/Neuter will hold a clinic from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. April 6. The Animal Hospital of Waynesville also holds microchip clinics, which they advertise in the local media.
• If you want a pet, check out the shelter first. If the shelter does not have one to meet your family needs, they will send you to Sarge’s to check out the pets rescued from the shelter and are holding in foster care looking for forever homes.
• If you think you want a pet but are not sure that it will fit your lifestyle or family needs, consider becoming a pet foster family. Sarge’s can give advice and support as you get to know an animal. These efforts will keep an adoptable pet alive until a permanent home is found and may even lead to a happy home with a pet for you and your family.
• If you need to surrender a pet, choose a non-shelter option such as www.petfider.com — or call Sarge’s at 246-9050 for other options.
• Be careful of pets from pet stores. Even if you get registration papers, they are highly likely to come from puppy mills. Over-bred animals come with a whole set of inherent diseases, deformities and hidden behavior problems.
• If you absolutely must have a “pure” bred pet, go to a well-known reputable breeder and pay the price.
The members working on the No More Homeless Pets Initiative are working to achieve a live release of healthy pets from the shelter to 90 percent or better and eliminate euthanasia of adoptable animals in Haywood County. For further information about this, call 400-6768 between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. Monday through Friday. If there is no answer, leave a message and the group will get back to you.