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'Puppy season' leads to an increase of pet surrenders

Jerome Animal Shelter
Posted at 11:17 AM, Mar 02, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-02 15:20:10-05

Magic Valley animal shelters are feeling the pressure of their facilities being overrun with dogs and cats, as shelters have seen double the number of pets they typically take in.

The Jerome Animal Shelter is a dog only shelter with space for 14 kennels. Shelter Technician Brittney Sterling said a few days ago the shelter had 30 dogs.

Sterling said this is the time that rescue organizations and shelters like to call “puppy season.”

RELATED: 'Every pen is full': People for Pets Twin Falls Animal Shelter operating at maximum capacity

“That’s when we see all the puppies who were born in the past couple months start coming,” Sterling said. “‘Oh we can’t sell them, we can’t find someone to buy them,’ you know that sort of thing. ‘Can we bring them to you?’”

A majority of the dogs in the Jerome Shelter are owner-pet surrenders. Sterling said the two main reasons owners surrender their pets are due to economics and housing pet policies. People may not be able to keep up with the cost of maintaining their pet, or are moving and have to surrender their pet due to the pet policies put in place by landlords.

People for Pets Executive Director Debbie Blackwood encourages pet owners to step up and be responsible.

“Responsible pet owners can take really good care of rental properties, but it’s a bad one that makes all us landlords not want our tenants to have pets,” Blackwood said.

Sterling and Blackwood urge pet owners to plan ahead.

They understand there are owners who may no longer be able to keep their pets, so they ask if they have to surrender their pet to make an appointment.