Wednesday, November 26, 2014

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City shelter takeover has animal advocates worried

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TWC News: City shelter takeover has animal advocates worried
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There are no shortages of animals up for adoption in Waco. So much so, that adoption coordinator Nicole Wilson is happy to see the friendly critters finding new homes quickly.

"The community is becoming aware of how many homeless pets we do have, and how many pets we have coming in our doors,” she said. "We genuinely want to see them in homes and stuff, so it's really encouraging for the staff. It's been a real morale booster."

However, the amount of animals finding forever families could be coming to a slow down. Due to the influx of animals, the City of Waco is taking over operations of the local animal shelter in November. The facility is currently run by the Humane Society of Central Texas.

"We have no idea what's coming, it's kind of scary but regardless of what's happening, we're going to move animals in homes," Wilson said.

The idea of the city taking over the shelter raises concerns that even adoptable dogs will be put down.

"We've seen fearful dogs that have come into our facility that have been able to be turned around and now are successfully in a home. It's just a matter of time," Linda Robinson-Pardo with Happy Endings Dog Rescue said.

By state law, the city only has to hold animals for 72 hours before putting them down.

About a half dozen rescue groups will be meeting every week to see what can be done — and how many animals can be saved — in the meantime.

"A healthy animal should never be euthanized, what we need to say is, we are not going to tolerate that,” Robinson-Pardo said. “Now what are we going to have to do to prevent it."

The groups hope to reach out beyond Central Texas and the state to help place animals.

"I'm hopeful that we can be strong enough to make this thing work so that the dogs win," Robinson-Pardo said.

The Humane Society of Central Texas is trying to get more animals into homes through a special adoption event this Saturday. Certain large dogs and cats have been sponsored thanks to community donations.

Those animals will be available for adoption for $10. Click here for more information.

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