Woods Humane Society and San Luis Obispo County Animal Services have seen an influx of puppies being surrendered to their respective shelters.
Both shelters saw an increase in the number of adoptions during the pandemic, however, representatives said they saw an increase in surrenders as the cause of inflation.
“Lately we’ve seen an increase in the number of puppies coming into the shelter more than we normally get. It’s been a relatively short-term phenomenon over the last couple of months,” said Dr. Eric Anderson of San Luis Obispo County Animal Services.
A representative of the Woods Humane Society said they’re getting calls every week from people asking for them to take their litter.
“Right now alone, we have 31 puppies in our foster program. We’ll have a handful available this week. We have already taken in three times the number of puppies we had during the same timeframe last year and we know there is more to come. So, we’re experiencing a bit of a puppy palooza, a puppy boom,” Interim CEO of Woods Humane Society Emily L’Heureux said.
Woods Humane Society and San Luis Obispo County of Animal Services are working together as partners to take in moms and their puppies.
The rise of inflation has played a part in the surrendering of animals to local shelters as owners have been forced to move to places where they aren’t able to take their pets.
Owners are also met with the harsh reality of what it costs to take care of a pet due to the rising costs of goods and necessities.
“We saw a really sharp drop in the number of animals coming into the shelter at the onset of COVID. Since about 2021, those numbers have started to rise again,” Anderson said.
Post-pandemic work schedules also are playing a part as owners are spending less time with their animals getting back into their workflow.
With the pairing of financial hardship, Dr. Anderson said he also attributes the lack of knowledge of new owners of what it means to take care of a new pet.
San Luis Obispo County Animal Services encourages those looking to adopt to take their time in adopting pets and once a decision is met it can be a very rewarding responsibility to take on.
“Since we’ve implemented the adoption by appointment process, we’ve seen the adoption stick and hold a lot better,” Dr. Anderson said.
“Right now our focus is on Wine for Paws. We’re a private nonprofit that doesn’t receive any government funding. So, even if you go out and have a glass of wine on Paws Weekend, that is going to help out the homeless dogs and cats here at Woods,” Emily L’Heureux said.
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