Horry County animal shelters overcrowded with some refusing admissions
HORRY COUNTY, SC (WBTW) Local animal shelters face a summer increase in admissions and a decline in adoptions.
This week, the Horry County Animal Care Center stopped welcoming animals unless they are injured or considered a danger to the public.
“We have had a number of recent calls where we have had to take large amounts of unusual animals,” said Mikyala Moskov of the Horry County Police Department.
The Horry County Animal Care Center is also the place where animals that are seized in connection with criminal investigations go.
Moskov says that at the moment there are 134 animals in their care and the majority are linked to court cases, some of which date back to a dog fighting bust in 2019.
But overcrowding is felt in local shelters. The Grand Strand Humane Society cares for over 100 cats beyond its capacity and about 40 more dogs than it is designed for.
When shelters are overcrowded, local rescues like All 4 Paws usually step in to help, but even All 4 Paws had to briefly halt supplies this week.
“In recent weeks we’ve had calls from Horry County, Georgetown County, Berkeley County, Colleton County, Calhoun County; any county in South Carolina, Orangeburg County, called for help with animal placement, ”said Allison Gillespie of All 4 Paws.
Darren Watson oversees the Whiskers Animal Shelter and Rescue; a 38-acre rescue at Loris.
Watson says a family reached out to her this week to tell her they were planning to leave two dogs and a cat on the side of the road as they couldn’t find shelter to take them.
“They had been to several shelters and had been turned down by everyone,” Watson said. “They had come to their mother and realized their mother was in worse condition than they thought, she had to go to a nursing home and the dogs had nowhere to go.”
Watson took the dogs, but says his rescue remains at full capacity.
“Everyone is full. Last year everyone was empty because everyone was adopting because people were home for Covid, but this year they are coming back because people are going back to work. “
Watson says something else that contributes to the problem, fewer pets were spayed or neutered last year as clinics were closed due to the coronavirus.
She’s hoping a local vet sees the need and commits to performing some of the surgeries for rescues in the area.
Each organization says they are in desperate need of foster families, you can find out more about their foster programs by clicking on the links below.