In Central Florida the county sheriff’s animal control section has become a temporary home for 748 animals. (The facility is only designed to hold 375.) Due to two very large seizures of abused and neglected animals the facility is nearly overflowing. The number of dogs from animal cruelty cases is more than 350. About a dozen inmates are helping with cage cleaning, feeding, and watering hundreds of dogs and cats.
The sheriff’s office actually started using inmates to help two years ago. The program helped save $250,000 a year since it began, as the inmates are not paid for their work. They do get to adopt an animal when they have finished their sentences. Inmates in the program are considered non-violent, and seem to enjoy working with the animals. The facility has so many animals a judge made a plea to the public to help. So far people have been adopting the many animals, and some donated supplies such as dog food and shampoo.
There were so many animals to attend to, that fifty volunteers also contributed to the animal care efforts. Said Richard Riga, from Labrador Retriever Rescue of Florida, “We saw the plea for help and knew we could offer our assistance. The dogs needed us.”
The Animal Control Section temporarily reduced the adoption fee to $5 per animal, and that is for both cats and dogs.
Image Credit: Surat Lozowick