ONLY ON 3: Pender shelter full, late puppy season to blame


BURGAW, NC (WWAY) — In Pender County, the animal shelter is at maximum capacity and that means quite a few animals are in desperate need of adoption or risk being euthanized.

“We’ve had a late puppy season. We’ve encountered a lot of litter of puppies in the last 30 days,” said shelter manager Jewel Horton. “That means we have 30 plus dogs in our adoption area. That does not include what we have in our isolation and holding area.”

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It’s not just dogs. There are cats and even a horse in need of finding their forever homes. Plus, holiday adoptions might not be as common as you would think.

“We don’t usually see a dramatic increase in adoptions this time of year. Some but not anything hugely significant. We still stay within our target average area,” said Horton.

So what’s the answer to the surplus?

“The solution to all of it is aggressive spay/neuter, not only here at the shelter but just in the community as well,” Horton said.

But those currently at the shelter need to be adopted or risk being put down.

“There are animals that have been here for a long time, like I said, some for 2 and 3 months, that would be most at risk for euthanizia. And that’s not something we want to do. We’ve been publishing some urgent lists trying to help get those dogs out. We’ve had a few rescues call today,” Horton said.

Horton said shelter pets make great holiday presents, however she encourages people to be aware of all the responsibilities that come along with owning an animal before adopting.