Animal shelters struggle to keep up during the holiday season – WYMT

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) – Through doors and in cages, hundreds of animals line the halls of local animal shelters.
Here in Lexington, the Lexington Humane Society has over 450 animals in their care, but the holidays are always a busy time for them.
Megan Hawkins with the Lexington Humane Society said there tends to be an increase in animal intake.
“That’s fluctuated over the last few weeks between 450 to almost 500, which is insane. Our food budget, which it starts in July, we go through the fiscal year. We’ve already reached our full food budget for the year, within four months,” Hawkins said.
Some of their animals are left in the shelters for hundreds of days, which means they need to provide them with everyday essentials, like food and water.
She said they also need to provide them with medicine and veterinary care.
“With the current inflation in the economy, we have seen prices go up, so we take care of everything for the animal. They are fixed, microchipped, vaccinated, and dewormed before they even go up for adoption and that doesn’t consider how long they stay with us,” Hawkins said.
The holidays can be a hard time for some families, so she said they often see more people surrender their pets, in order to pay for holiday gifts.
With breaks from work and school, she hopes to see more people come shop, adopt, and foster.
“Just to give it a break, just to give it a nice quiet place to wake up on Christmas morning instead of being here in the shelter with the barking. By doing that, we’ll have other open cages for other animals that can go up for adoption and maybe find their home during those couple of weeks when the cages are open,” Hawkins said.
The Lexington Humane Society wants to have a “silent night” in the shelter this holiday season, so they encourage people to foster an animal if they are able.
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