Oktibbeha County Humane Society joins hundreds of animal shelters in nationwide pet adoption push

STARKVILLE, Miss. (WCBI) – Monday, the Oktibbeha County Humane Society is joining more than 250 animal shelters in what organizers are calling the largest funded pet adoption event in the country.

Staff at the Oktibbeha County Humane Society say their kennels are almost always full.

“That is two animals in a kennel, then right now, about six of their runs have six to eight animals in them,” says animal care manager Camille Cotton.

And she says that’s just for their 27 dog kennels. Cotton says their 36 cat kennels have close to two cats or two to four kittens in each of them.

“If we’re full at the shelter, we do try to get our animals into foster care,” Cotton says. “We’ve even boarded some of our adoptable animals at the veterinarian’s office.”

That’s why the Oktibbeha County Humane Society is part of the BISSELL Pet Foundation’s National “Empty the Shelters” adoption event.

Usually, the Starkville shelter charges $120 to adopt adult dogs, $170 to adopt a puppy and $95 to adopt a cat.

But from July 11 to 31, any of their animals could be adopted for as little as $25.

“That includes everything that they normally get in an adoption,” Cotton says. “Animals are spayed and neutered before they leave, they’re also microchipped.”

The BISSELL Foundation reimburses participating shelters so that they can find homes for their animals quickly and without losing money. The program usually runs for just a week but they decided to extend that because of the overcrowding crisis they say is facing shelters across the United States.

“We can’t necessarily give them as much attention as we’d want to because we have so many others to take care of,” says Oktibbeha Humane Society employee Sydney Parkman. “And so their yard time is a lot shorter, they don’t have as much room to run.”

The BISSELL foundation also says the euthanasia of homeless dogs when up by 22 percent during the first three months of 2022.

“It’s really disheartening,” Parkman says. “You try to tell yourself you gave them as much love as you can. It sucks, quite blatantly, you feel like you failed them.”

The hope is that “Empty the Shelters” can save the lives of animals in Mississippi and beyond.

The Oktibbeha County Humane Society is one of at least five shelters in the state participating in the adoption event.

Click here for more information on their adoption process.

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