Lee County’s population grew about 5 percent last year. But the population of ownerless pets at Lee County Animal Services grew twice as fast — by 10 percent. Last year was a record year for animal services… by finding homes for more than 3,000 animals. The agency DOES have to put some of its animals to sleep—especially if they’re aggressive or very ill. But, spokesperson Ria Brown says she’s proud of the overall survival rate.
“When a stray comes in, we will hold that animal for five days to give the owner a chance to claim it. And while it’s being held as a stray, we’re evaluating its health and behavior. So, if it isn’t claimed by the owner, then it can be moved up to our adoption side. Once it gets up there, it just depends on how much space we have, how many more are coming in—as opposed to how many we’re adopting out—and how the animal’s doing. Once an animal gets up to adoption, it’s got about a 70 percent chance of getting a home.”
Lee County Animal Services doesn’t just accept strays. They also take pets that owners give up. Officials report a 27 percent increase in the number of surrendered pets last year. Animal Services director, Scott Trebatoski, says—quote—it’s a sad reflection of the trend to treat companion animals as disposable property—end quote.
Monday, 07 March 2005 00:00