Around 2.4 million dogs and cats have to be put down in U.S. shelters a year due to overpopulation.
The overpopulation of pet animals becomes a very important issue during this time of year. Hilary Knight who works at the Lafourche Parish Animal Shelter at 934 Hwy. 3185 in Thibodaux said that cat reproductive cycles come in seasons, namely when it begins to get warmer.
Six to seven week old kittens especially are known to crowd the shelter from April to the end of June. The problem is that there is also a drop in the number of people who want to adopt.
Sadly due to these circumstances it is during these months where the save rate of cats and dogs drops dramatically.
“It’s backwards because you see a lot of people that want to adopt around Christmas time, November and December, and we barely have anything in December but right now it’s completely overflowing,” said Knight. “The intake numbers are really kicking up in gear and it will probably stay like that until September.”
Because of this the Lafourche Parish Animal Shelter encourages the community to adopt their rescues. They are open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday from 9 to 3:30, and on the first Saturday of every month from 8 a.m. to noon.
Dogs are $100 to adopt and cats and kittens are $50. The cost also covers the pet’s spay/neuter cost as well as the cost of their microchip and all of their appropriate vaccinations. In total these costs would normally run a person at least $300.
The Lafourche Parish Animal Shelter takes in over 3000 lost or stray pets every year and sadly many have to be put to sleep because of the lack of space. Adopting, fixing your pets, and microchipping are all ways to help prevent more animals from having to be euthanized.
“That’s my biggest thing, if everyone were spaying and neutering their cats then we wouldn’t have this happen. This is heartbreaking. But when people adopt with us they are already a step ahead in the game because we do all of that for you,” said Knight.
The Lafourche Parish Animal Shelter always welcomes donations to help fulfill their ever-growing needs. During this season where they are overrun with young kittens that cannot yet eat solid food the animal shelter is always in need of canned kitten food and cat litter. But any sort of small donations that people can offer goes a long way with them as well such as blankets and towels.
They also encourage people to bring them stray cats and dogs that people may find, however they also encourage community residents that find pets that they suspect may belong to someone to first try and locate the pet owner.
For pet owners, using a microchip or an I.D. tag is the best way to ensure that your pet is returned to you if it becomes lost. A pet microchip can be scanned for its I.D. code and used at www.petmicrochiplookup.org/ to find the lost pet’s owner.
This Saturday, May 30, the Lafourche Parish Animal Shelter will host what they call Bark in the Park where they will be at the Lockport Bayouside Park holding open adoptions of the pets that they will be bringing from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m.
“We’ve been trying to go out to other areas of the parish to get the public more involved to get people to see these things happening because a lot of times people try to close their eyes to it. They don’t want to go to the shelter, but it’s a lot easier for them to see four or five dogs or cats out in the community in good behavior to where they can imagine them living in their home,” said Knight.
If you have any questions about adopting a pet from the Lafourche Parish Animal Shelter feel free to call them at (985) 446-3532.
Posted on Tue, May 26, 2015
by Ulysses Gisclair, Contributing Writer