SHS sees increased adoption rates
By NICOLE LOGGINS/Staff Writer
COLUMBIANA – Adoptions from the Shelby County Humane Society hit a four-year high in 2011.
SHS received 5,019 animals last year, an increase from 4,960 in 2010. Despite the increase in intake, SHS increased adoptions by 260 lives. About 1,150 animals were united with adoptive families thanks to the work of the shelter staff, according to a press release.
“It’s a huge achievement,” Jenny Wilson, executive director of SHS, said in an interview. “It’s our No. 1 goal to save lives and placing animals into homes where they have not been returned is the perfect situation.”
Wilson attributes the adoption success to the many promotions the shelter held in 2011.
“Last June we waived adoption fees for cats, and we have done multiple promotions, we attribute that success to the large number of promotions we ran,” Wilson said.
The SHS also recently lowered the adoption rates from $130 for dogs and $115 for cats to $80 for animals under six months old and $60 for animals over six months old.
“We think (the rate drop) has contributed to moving animals out of the shelter,” Wilson said. “All animals receive vaccinations, a microchip and have been spayed and neutered, so you really get a lot for your money.”
As part of the Shelby Humane Society’s community outreach program, the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and SHS created a partnership to ensure more pets leave the shelter alive.
The ASPCA provided funding for SHS to employ a full-time adoption coordinator. The new position has enabled SHS to attend more community functions and raise awareness of the adoptable pets that SHS has to offer.
“We are extremely lucky to have the financial support and expertise from the ASPCA to help us increase adoptions,” said Wilson. “This is all about saving lives and getting out into the community to make it happen. As a community, we can tackle our pet overpopulation problem one life at a time.”
Over the next year, the ASPCA and SHS will work together to develop initiatives to improve the outcome of shelter animals in Shelby County. SHS will be hosting adoption events and an off-site adoption area in the North Shelby area.
“It is important to remember to adopt a shelter animal. Most did not do anything wrong to end up here and are truly wonderful pets. Adopting saves lives,” said Stephanie Wilson, SHS’s adoption coordinator.
SHS is open to the public Tuesday through Saturday from noon until 5:30 p.m. for adoptions. Visit Shelbyhumane.org for more information or to view pets available for adoption.
“This next year we want the number to be even higher than it was this year,” Wilson said. “We encourage everyone to help us do that.”