By Taylor Boyd
Sixteen animals found their fur-ever homes during a recent free adoption event at the SPCA of Martinsville-Henry County.
E.C. Stone, executive director of the SPCA, said the event was designed to get more animals out of the shelter.
“If we free up space, then every animal that we get out of the building means we can bring another one in, we can save another life,” he said.
Since the agency is limited on the number of animals that can be housed there due to space constraints, Stone said the agency works to “get every adoptable dog from” animal shelters in Martinsville and Henry County because that “takes them away from the threat of being put down” because the SPCA is a no kill shelter.
The SPCA is also seeing an increase in adoptions after the pandemic’s high point last year, Stone said. “Right now, sometimes you can’t even find a parking space here.”
But it was a different story during high point of the pandemic because “people were afraid to come out to begin with” and “did not adopt quite as many” animals, he said.
Stone said he was thankful for the people that trickled in during that time, as pets were sought for companionship, especially by those who live alone or those who were feeling lonely.
While the SPCA currently is not experiencing an influx of animals, Stone said it is accepting more than it did last year.
“We never had to close the doors, and we still made some runs” to the shelters, “and we got the dogs and cats out,” he said.
He also noted recent changes in laws, including one with respect to temperature, are now in effect. Now, adequate shelter is required for dogs tethered outside if the temperature is 85-degrees or more.
“But the adequate shelter means it’s got to be a temperature-controlled environment. Pretty much if it’s over 85-degrees, it has to be inside or somewhere where the temperature can be controlled,” he said.
Stone also stressed that with the temperature rising people should not leave their pets inside vehicles in parking lots, even with the windows down.
“It can get really hot in a car really fast. Within 10 minutes, it can go up 30-degrees, especially if you don’t have the windows cracked at all. So, your dog can die of a heatstroke while you’re in a store for half-an-hour,” he said.
Instead, Stone said vehicles should be left running with the air conditioner on if a person is forced to leave their pet in the vehicle.
The SPCA also works with several area veterinarians to provide low-cost vouchers for pet care, Stone said. The vouchers are $65 for cats and $85 for dogs, and each includes spay/neuter, a microchip, and one year rabies vaccine. Once the voucher is purchased, it must be used within three months, he added.
The Martinsville-Henry County SPCA is open Tuesday through Friday from noon to 6 p.m., and Saturdays from noon to 4 p.m. For more information, call (276) 638-7297.