Spring is rapidly approaching, and with the warm weather comes many changes for the world of animal sheltering. Most notably, there will be a TON of cats! So what does this huge seasonal increase in population mean for the Franklin County Animal Shelter?
First of all, we need more supplies! With a higher number of animals, we will go through more food, cleaning supplies, vaccines, medical tests, blankets, and the list goes on. As a non-profit organization that thrives mostly off of donations and public generosity, this is the time of year that we need support more than ever. Approximately 80% of our funding comes straight from you, our donors! If you’d like to donate now, click here. Or take a look at our wishlist if you’d like to donate a specific item.
So just how many cats are we talking about? In 2014, we took in 1,050 cats. That’s almost 100 cats per month! Well over half of that number arrived at FCAS between May and August. Cats are the most prolific, but we also have a large increase in dog intakes in the summer months. In 2014, we took in 468 dogs and approximately 300 of those dogs arrived between May and August. Wow!
Another challenge in the summer is not only more cats, but more pregnant cats! Baby kittens are extremely fragile for the first few weeks of their lives, so an animal shelter with several other cats, some of which are sick, is not a good place for them to start out. This is when we turn to our wonderful foster parents! Fosters provide temporary care at their home for animals in a vulnerable state. When a pregnant cat arrives at the shelter, we try to get her into a nice, quiet foster home before the birth. There she will receive more individual attention than we can provide at the shelter, and her kittens will be much less likely to fall ill. Foster parents are supplied with all the food and materials they need to care for the mother and kittens until the babies are about 2 months old. At that point they are strong enough to return to the shelter, get fixed, and be adopted. Think you might want to try fostering? Or want more information? Click here.
If you want to help out, but donating or fostering isn’t your thing, we also LOVE to have volunteers at the shelter in the summer months! This is a great time of year to be a dog walker. With more animals, each dog and cat is getting less individual attention from staff. The more volunteers willing to play with dogs and pet cats, the better their lives will be! Click here if you’d like to learn more or apply to be a volunteer.
So all of those animals have to go somewhere, right? Yes, into homes! The best way of all to help the shelter is by adopting a pet and providing a loving home. If you’ve been thinking of introducing a new pet to your home, spring is a great time to do it. Warm weather makes potty training your new dog more convenient and leash training will be fun in the sun! Click here to check out our available dogs and available cats. Come find your new friend this spring!