Jackson County Animal Shelter overcrowding at critical levels

Jackson Co. Animal Shelter filled to capacity, seeking adoptees

JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - In the past week, the Jackson County Animal Shelter has been overrun with animals. The situation is so bad, there is literally no more room. But there are ways that you can help ease the burden.

Animal control officers are staying very busy these days.

“We have a major influx of animals coming into the shelter every day. We’re individually out on calls dealing with the public and abandonment situations and people just leaving their dogs to run the streets,” Anthony Malis said.

Workers at the shelter agree, including Maridee Mallette.

“To me, it’s very bad. It always has been actually but it just seems like it’s never ending, the animals coming in,” Mallette said. "So we’re full to capacity, over capacity really.”

The numbers are adding up, and not in a good way for shelter director Joe Barlow.

“I’d say on a scale from one to ten. we’re probably at an eight right now," Barlow said. "Again, keep in mind, we’re not officially in spring yet. We will be in a couple of days.”

Despite the dire situation at the Jackson County Animal Shelter with the overcrowding problem, despite the sadness that sometimes occurs, there are success stories that actually walk right in the door.

Courtney Smith was adopting a forever friend Monday.

“It brings me joy. And I have a daughter that loves dogs. So whenever, we actually just got one for Christmas and so I came up here to adopt one today,”

There are other ways to help, as well.

“If you’re not interested in long-term pet ownership, come help us foster with some hard to place animals,” Barlow said.

When it comes to pet ownership, we have to exercise responsibility. That includes spaying and neutering, Barlow added.

“It seems cute at the time to have a litter of puppies and certainly it is. Until they are brought here and left on our doorstep and then our numbers go up again and then we’re looking at a whole new set up of pups that need to find a family.”

Mallette says family is a key word in this scenario.

“People aren’t treating their animals like family. They are part of your family. You have to take care of them and love them.”

To further highlight the problem, while two dogs were adopted in the hour that we were at the shelter, two more dogs were brought in and surrendered.

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