Santa Barbara Co. animal shelters seeing increase in adoptions, fosters

Posted at 3:39 PM, Apr 16, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-16 22:09:39-04

There are fewer animals at Santa Barbara County animal shelters, but not all of them have left for good.

Officials say many animals have been taken in by foster families during the shelter-at-home orders.

"It's not normal but we do have a lot of pets that we pushed out to foster, which has been a saving grace to animal services," said animal services manager for the shelter Esteban Rodriguez. "They're really able to take a pet home and give it that family environment which is crucial for us cause it gives our pets a chance to get out of the shelter and experience what home life is."

In Santa Barbara, there are only six animals at the shelter - three dogs, one duck, a guinea pig and two chickens.

Santa Maria's numbers are higher, with 22 dogs and cats. There are also 10 rabbits, a horse and two chickens.

Lompoc currently has eight dogs, three cats and 12 rabbits available.

Adoptions cost $10. The fee does not include the cost of the license or microchip.

To learn more about the fostering program at the shelters, click here.

All three locations are open by appointment only. For more information, click here.

San Luis Obispo County says the number of animals at the shelter there right now is "unheard of." With 11 dogs and three cats, there are actually more horses than dogs and cats, Animal Services Manager Dr. Eric Anderson told KSBY News.

While no staff has been laid off, Anderson says volunteer hours have been reduced along with help from San Luis Obispo County Honor Farm inmates. Additionally, some staff have been diverted to other roles within the county, like helping with the alternative care site at the Cal Poly Rec Center.