Local animal shelters weigh in on nationwide report of owners surrendering their pets

Local News

Erie’s ANNA Shelter is seeing what they say is “an unfortunate” increase of pet owners surrendering their fur babies. This comes after nationwide reports of people returning to work and not having the time to care for their pet.

The ANNA Shelter continues to be a place for animals that are looking for a forever home. With people returning to work after being home during the COVID-19 pandemic, forever hasn’t lasted very long.

“Unfortunately, and I was hoping I wouldn’t see that, but we are seeing more owner surrenders than we have in the past.” said Ruth Thompson, Founder of the ANNA Shelter.

Thompson believes the rise in pet owners returning theirs could be due to going back to work. She says the shelter is back to 91 cats and 59 dogs.

“Now, we’re back to cats being here for a couple of months. Some of the dogs have been here for a couple of months or longer. It doesn’t seem like people have the time.” Thompson said.

The Erie Humane Society says at this time they’re not seeing a significant numbers of returns in relation to the pandemic.

Nicole Leone, Executive Director of the shelter, says the shelter had 1,601 adoptions from March 2020 till now. Leone says the shelter had 70 pets returned that aren’t related to the pandemic.

“We’re really proud of our numbers right now. We have not seen any kind of increase in pets being returned, so we’re not part of the “national trend.” Leone said.

Both shelters advise those who may be thinking about returning their pet to think twice and call the shelters for help.

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