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‘Crack at the seams’: Nebraska Humane Society faces capacity shortage

OMAHA, Nebraska (Nebraska) — The Humane Society of Nebraska is facing a crisis, and if they don’t get help soon, they may have to start giving up pets and animals.

Right now, dogs like Hazel, Fat Boy, and Rex are considered lucky enough to get temporary stays with the Humane Society of Nebraska.

“We currently have a total of 274 dog kennels, including overcrowded kennels, and we currently have 272 of those kennels full,” says Pam Wiese of the NHS.

Wiese says the shelter is in dire need of foster families and adopters, especially as the shelter continues to accept stray animals, animals from court cases and animals confiscated by animal control.

She usually says cats are the animals the shelter is overflowing with, but this time it’s dogs.

“This is not our typical busy season, so we’re really working on getting strategic about what we’re going to be doing this summer,” she adds.

Wiese says the length of stay for each dog is increasing, including puppies. As a rule, puppies are adopted within a few hours. Recently, they have been in the shelter for several days.

“Adoption has slowed down and animals continue to go to shelters and people don’t adopt like they used to,” Wiese adds.

And it’s not just a humane society.

“I have 292 active volunteers, so that’s about 215 animals under our protection right now,” said Isaiah Langworthy of Muddy Paws Second Chance Rescue.

Langworthy says the number of dogs they have adopted and adopted is skyrocketing.

“Muddy Paws gets an average of 15 calls a day to let the owner out, sometimes less and sometimes more, and countless inquiries on our website to let the owner out,” he adds.

Both Langworthy and Wiese say there are several reasons why they believe this trend is happening both locally and nationally.

“People got dogs during COVID and now they’re moving or going back to the office or life just came back and it’s like, ‘oh no, we don’t have time for that dog,'” Langworthy says.

“In terms of learning what’s going on across the country, as well as talking to other shelters and people who need to donate pets, the economy, high inflation, high costs play a huge role,” Wiese says. “If you’re paying more than $400 a month for groceries, you might not be in the mood to get a dog, and if you have a pet, you might be like, ‘wow, I can’t afford to feed my kids and feed my pet.’ what has to give.”

Langworthy also says dogs that aren’t neutered or neutered are given up because veterinary clinics are backed up for months with appointments.

Both Langworthy and Wiese say the most helpful thing the community can do, if it can, is become a dog sanctuary so that the Humane Society and other rescue organizations can continue to accept new pets rather than abandon them.

According to Wiese, parenting does three good things.

“It gets them out of the shelter, gives us more information about what they are like at home, and shows them to other people to be adopted, so it’s a really great way to work and use the whole community to showcase the animal to help him. adopt.”

Better yet, adopt if you can.

“There’s such a variety of animals out there, so many dogs available, that we probably have someone who will fit your personality and lifestyle if you’re just patient enough to watch and if you really want a dog right now,” Wiese adds.

Adoptable dogs can be viewed on the Nebraska Humane Society website.

An app is available to be an emergency foster home for pets.

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