Local shelter has influx of dogs

Your local animal shelter has found itself in dire straits. Out of the 20 available kennels for canines — three of which are legally designated for law enforcement — 18 are occupied. Shelter staff says this is constant.

They’ve also found commonalities that could be mitigated with simple and low-cost resolutions by local owners.

Staff at the Lassen County Animal Shelter said a full shelter is not uncommon, and the need for space never seems to slow down.

The facts are the local shelter, run by volunteers, is not going to expand in size anytime soon.

Many of the dogs that enter the shelter are strays found in various areas of Lassen County.

Although the shelter receives visits from rescues from across the region, where both cats and dogs are taken from the shelter’s hands, it doesn’t seem to stop the influx.

Shelter staff makes the extra effort to reach out to animal rescues themselves, but many times they too are overrun with demand.

According to the ASPCA approximately 6.5 million companion animals enter U.S. shelters nationwide every year.

Each year, approximately 1.5 million shelter animals are euthanized; 670,000 of those are dogs.

About 710,000 animals that enter shelters as strays are returned to their owners; of those returned 620,000 are dogs.

Local shelter staff make it a priority for rescues to take animals that are most likely to, as a last resort, find themselves potentially euthanized.

The circumstances don’t always work out as hoped, which breaks the heart and soul of every volunteer who has to put down a loving yet unspoken-for animal.

In addition to staying attentive of your pets, shelter staff recommend owners provide their animals with proper identification.

If interested in a free identification tag, owners can reach Jackie at Sit Spot Canine Center at 257-3161.

You can also go to the Lassen County Humane Society’s website to download a form for a low-cost identification tag at lassenhumanesociety.org/services, or call 257-4555 for more details.

Of course if your dog or cat’s middle name is Houdini, microchipping your pet is an assured way for both the shelter staff and you to find your lost animal and bring them back home safely for under $50.