Shelters see an increase of runaway dogs after holiday weekend

West Virginia

HUNTINGTON, WV (WOWK) – Shelters across the Mountain State are experiencing what they’re calling the “busiest week of the year.”

They’re seeing an influx of strays coming in following the fireworks from this past Fourth of July weekend.

The Huntington Cabell Wayne Animal Control Shelter says they now have all kennels full. They also say they’ve been receiving nonstop calls from people looking for their runaway animals.

“We’ve had lots of calls from people who’ve lost their animals – or who’s animals ran away or got scared or spooked – during the times when different people are letting off fireworks,”

Courtney Proctor Cross, Huntington Cabell Wayne Animal Control Shelter Executive Director

Shelter workers are now having to work extra hard to make sure all animals are cared for. That means walking, feeding, playing, and tending to them, all while they wait to reunite each animal with their family.

The shelter says the influx of animals they get following the fourth of July’s fireworks is something they see every year. The only difference is – this year – COVID creates an additional step.

Now they’re faced with the task of making sure each new animal is vaccinated and safe.

“Where our kennel space is full, it kind of slows us down because – instead of having 2 or 3 dogs that we’re having to test, and understand and find placement for – we’re now looking at 20 dogs and so it kind of slows down that process quite a bit,” says Kendall Hotmer, a trainer with the Huntington Cabell Wayne Animal Control Shelter.

If your pet is missing, there is a process to come claim them at the shelter.

Cross says to be sure you have a recent picture of your fur friend and all up-to-date files.

The shelter can be reached online through their website or by calling 304-696-5551.

For more stories from Anna King, follow her on Facebook and Twitter.

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