HOUSTON (FOX 26) - The Harris County Animal Shelter hasn’t been able to get catch a break.
Last week, when it was operating at three times capacity, 150 animals were placed into homes. However, over the weekend, 200 more animals were brought in.
Kerry McKeel with the shelter is seeing more and more litters of cats and dogs — either found as strays or because their owners could not care for them.
She says many who surrender cite lifestyle changes.
“We’ve heard everything from divorce to having a new baby to moving to not being able to pay a pet deposits at apartment complexes,” she explained.
McKeel says, on average, they take in 40 to 60 animals in a day. But lately it’s been upwards of 100 and they can only comfortably care for 200 at a time.
“We are literally at this point putting animals whoever we can,” she added.
Since the beginning of September, the shelter has taken in almost 1,000 animals including nearly 600 dogs.
Jenny Mejía came to the shelter looking to adopt a cat. She says she didn’t know the shelter was over capacity before coming in.
“I could tell when I walked in, there were so many people just waiting to surrender,” Mejía told FOX 26.
While a forever home is always the goal, the shelter is making a big appeal for fostering.
“We just need 2 to 3 weeks for someone to come forward and foster an animal and then we can get them into a transport,” McKeel said referring to transporting the animals to other shelters or rescue groups across the state.
She adds all medical needs are taken care of and supplies like food can also be provided, if needed.
McKeel also wants to remind people about the importance of spraying and neutering. Harris County does have a voucher program for people who need help covering the cost of the service.
Some animals are free to adopt, but everyone has to go through the application process.
Adoption hours are 1 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
To see a list of adoptable pets, visit www.countypets.com.