Dozens of seized animals heading to Florida - - The News for South Mississippi

Dozens of seized animals heading to Florida


By Trang Pham-Bui – bio | email

HARRISON COUNTY, MS   (WLOX) – Their paperwork has been processed, and their furry faces were captured on camera.  In all, 62 dogs and 23 cats were placed in their new cages Friday afternoon.  They were getting ready for a three-hour road trip.

Volunteers with the Panhandle Animal Welfare Society, or PAWS, arrived at the Harrison County Farm to take the dogs and cats to their shelter in Fort Walton Beach, Florida.  They were among 300 animals that were seized, after officers raided the South Mississippi Animal Rescue Team and Refuge nearly two weeks ago.

"We don't care what they give us to take back," said Dee Thompson, Director of Animal Services for PAWS.  "We mix it all up, the big, the little, the hairless, the non hairless, whatever it takes to get a new home."

The dogs and cats have been staying under tents and barns at the Harrison County Farm. 

"Although it's much ideal than the situation that they came from, it's still crowded and it's still overwhelming for them to be in such large numbers, all in one place. So we're real excited to see them [PAWS] here today," said Tara High, Interim Director of the Humane Society of South Mississippi.

Once the animals reach the shelter in Florida, a team of veterinarians, vet techs and volunteers will be there to welcome them to their new home.

"Temperament testing and evaluating each and everyone, so we can make sure they can get into the correct home," said Thompson. "We have our own adoption system and we also have several of our rescues that we work in."

This latest move means they are one step closer to finding a more permanent home.

"We definitely never come into these situations with the thought that anything would be euthanized. Everyone of these deserves another chance," said Thompson.

"That's the great thing about animal welfare.  There's no competition, because everybody is working to take care of the animals," said High.

There are about 100 cats and dogs still left at the Harrison County Farm. The Humane Society of South Mississippi is trying to get them relocated to other shelters by early next week.  Over the past two weeks, other animals have been adopted by private citizens and organizations, or taken in by the Waveland Animal Shelter.

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