Jackson Co. animal shelter sees increase in unwanted pets

By Patrice Clark – bio | email

JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) – Jackson County's animal shelter said as the economy worsens, it's being overwhelmed with unwanted pets. Temporary space for pets is hard to come by these days at the shelter. Bill Richman helps manage the shelter and said the place has been overwhelmed with abandon animals as well as owners giving up their four-legged friends.

"Dogs are the largest number and cats being the second," said Bill Richman.

For every dog or cat adopted here, four or five are brought into these gates. Not all find homes. From the moment many of these animals are dropped off the clock is ticking.

"We feel bad for the animal number one. The animal can't take care of itself and has to depend on humans," Richman said. "We feel disappointment and even angered sometimes for those who have failed to take care of that pet."

Richman believes the loss of income, jobs, and homes have contributed to the increase of unwanted animals. According to county numbers, this year alone 569 animals have been coming through the doors each month, compared to 495 a year ago.

"The hope is that our economy will get better, and people will be able to do the right thing by their pets, and make it easier on the animals and themselves," Richman said.

Richman said the shelter is aggressively pushing pet adoptions. He said the goal is to help give the animals a second chance at happiness and a new home.

"The animals that we have here have not known the best of times and are grateful to get a family that will take care of them," Richman said about the shelter animals.

All adopted animals are provided with initial vaccinations and preventative worming. The shelter also provides a free health exam with a certificate of examination from the Jackson County Veterinary Society. If you would like to adopt a pet, call (228) 497-6350.

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