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Alachua County Animal Services Operates During Pandemic, Foster Numbers High

Alachua County Animal Services is the only animal shelter in the province that is still open and taking in animals that are roaming around. Ed Williams, the Animal Provider Director, said that even though they’re still taking in strays, the shelter isn’t full to bursting, even though they’re taking in a lot of pets.

“I would say that the shelter is working at about 50-60% capacity right now, which is great.” A person named Williams says that at the shelter there are nine felines and 59 pet dogs. There are also eight cats and 72 pets in foster care.

Alachua County Animal Services Operates During Pandemic, Foster Numbers High

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As it turns out, “We have more animals in foster care than we do in our shelter, which I think is the first time that I’ve ever heard of that.” Because people spend more time at home, they have been able to promote or embrace animals, which is a good thing, says Williams.

A lot of people have been willing to help us out by taking in animals that we need. Our secret hope is that people will fall in love and keep them. Williams has also waived adoption fees and is giving families all the tools they need to get a new animal. People who own animals should also watch webinars that say they should have a three-step plan in place for their animals to be cared for in case they get sick.

“You have kind of a main plan in place if you get sick and need to self-quarantine. Second, if you had to go to the hospital at some point, make sure your animals have a place to go or someone who can come into your house to look after them on a regular basis. Section three says that you still have a back-up plan for that.

According to Williams, the shelter is set up to get animals from homes where the new owner agreed to send them to the health centre because of Coronavirus.

Animal Services

“Then we have to put on full PPE and take the animals in, and we have to quarantine them for 14 days here at the shelter. We can just give them back to the owner or a close family member.”

The shelter is also refusing to acknowledge any donations unless it’s an emergency. Williams said that giving up an animal because you can’t afford pet food isn’t the right thing to do. The Humane Society of North Central Florida is one place where animal owners can get help.

“There are a lot of non-profits in Alachua County that can give free pet food to people who have been heavily impacted by COVID, like someone has lost their job or something like that.”

It doesn’t matter how bad things are now. Williams still has a big advantage when it comes to animal health and safety.

Still: “We are still doing animal services, but we have to work a little differently than we would under normal conditions. We are still serving the community and taking care of the animals.

Williams is now setting up appointments for reclaims, cultivating, and adoptions, as well.

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