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Animal shelters offer hope for strays

May 24, 2014 - Greg Hitchcock
When Daisy entered into the care of the Animal Protective Foundation, she was suffering from allergies and mites that caused her continuous scratching.

“The day she came in, you wouldn’t have known what color she was,” Operations Assistant Diane Kessler said. “Her eyes were almost closed.”

“We didn’t give up on her,” she said.

After a course of treatments with the veterinarian, a special diet, and placed in a foster home, Daisy is doing much better.

“She is a whole different cat now,” Kessler said.

Animal shelters across the United States, like the Animal Protective Foundation in Schenectady County, N.Y., take in and care for approximately 7.6 million companion animals each year, according to the ASPCA, with 3.9 million being dogs and another 3.9 million being cats.

Adirondack Save-A-Stray in Corinth, N.Y. has been placing from 1,200 to 1,500 dogs and cats for adoption annually, said the rescue organization’s director Meredith Fiel.

“We have around 30 to 40 puppies available for adoptions. There is always an overpopulation of cats and kittens, especially during kitten season,” Fiel said.

She said that after 30 years in operation, Adirondack Save-A-Stray knows who will be a proper owner to adopt their rescued strays, after going through a pre-interview and application process.

“After almost 30 years in existence, we kind of get the feel of who is going to fit the bill and provide a proper, loving, and responsible home,” Fiel said.

According to the American Veterinary Medical Association, the number of stray and abandoned dogs and cats far exceed the capacity of U.S. households to care for them. As a result, animal control agencies, humane organizations, and private-practice veterinarians euthanize millions of companion animals yearly.

Many animal shelters and animal rescue organizations like Adirondack Save-A-Stray require spaying and neutering companion animals.

Interim Executive Director Rosalie Ault of the Animal Protective Foundation said spaying and neutering contributes to stemming the overpopulation of pets.

“If communities would strengthen and enforce licensing of animals (including cats), this would help to prevent stray animals from coming through our doors,” Ault said.


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Daisy with her foster mother. Photo/Animal Protective Foundation.


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