The Erath County Humane Society has reached full capacity with 66 dogs and 28 cats.
ECHS Executive Director Diane McCoy said that May, June and July are peak months for receiving an influx of animals to the shelter.
“A lot of it is because of puppy and kitten season. Some of it is because—I don’t blame things on students —but it’s just coincidental that sometimes when school's out, we inherit a lot of animals and seem to find them out in the country. I think kids are probably going home and can’t take them so May, June and July, we’re going to go up and then we’ll start going down just a little bit and then when college comes back, everybody comes out here and wants to adopt a pet so we kind of peaked probably the first part of the month so hopefully we’re going to start declining a little bit but we’re pretty full. We only have 27 indoor dog kennels,” McCoy said.
Due to the increased number of dogs and cats, the shelter is also in need of items like cat litter; canned cat food (pate, not fish); dry puppy and dog food (Pedigree/Purina or better); bleach; Fabuloso or other scented cleaner; spray cleaner; liquid HE fabric softener; liquid HE laundry soap; paper towels; hand sanitizer; collars; leashes; pine shavings; old bath towels and blankets.
But the two items that the shelter needs the most are cat litter and cat food.
“Last week I was telling a girl that we were going through a hundred pounds of cat litter a week,” she said. “If we have a cat that gets adopted, even if I put fresh litter in her box that morning and she gets adopted this afternoon, I have to dump it because you can’t mix. You can’t let a new cat go in with an old cat’s litter because you can contaminate. Somebody made the remark that they thought that was an awful lot of cat litter. Well, you gotta keep cats healthy and you can’t cross contaminate.”
ECHS is trying to find another location to move the shelter to but so far, they haven’t found anything.
"We would like to pursue the possibility of finding some land somewhere that we can purchase or maybe some wonderful person would donate a couple of acres close to the city limits, but we haven’t reached any agreements with anybody so we are actively looking for someplace to go,” McCoy said.
The shelter is also limited on storage. McCoy said if someone wants to donate items to the shelter, a gift card would be more convenient.
“If they were going to buy something, they can get us a gift card for $10 instead of buying lots of cat litter just because of storage,” she added.