Orange County animal shelter hits capacity as confiscation cases worsen high-intake streak

Orange County Animal Services announced Wednesday it had reached capacity amid a streak of high-intake days worsened by recent confiscation cases of animals being kept in poor living conditions.

“Just yesterday we took in 91 dogs and cats,” Diane Summers, OCAS manager, said in a statement. “This pushed the shelter beyond capacity and we’re urging those in our community who have a heart for animals to adopt, to foster, to volunteer, and to share our message.”

Adoption fees for all pets have been reduced to $10 through Sunday, May 19, according to the shelter. As OCAS presently cares for 600 pets — some 226 dogs and 112 cats in the shelter off Conroy Road, as well as another 236 cats and 26 dogs in foster care throughout Central Florida — Diane’s statement placed emphasis on the shelter’s urgent need for more kitten foster homes.

“We’re only halfway through the month and have already received more than 300 kittens,” Summers said. “We’re in desperate need of foster homes for kittens. Just a few weeks of care for the little ones makes all the difference.”

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OCAS has hit capacity in the midst of the so-called “kitten season,” the time of year when cats tend to have more babies. While the season runs from April to October, May is the peak, Summers said.

As for the confiscation cases, the statement mentioned two. Photos were included from an Apopka case on Tuesday where an emaciated German shepherd was among many animals found living in unsafe, foul-smelling structures, all lacking adequate access to food and water.

The other confiscation case was recorded out of Pine Hills, in which Summers said law enforcement raided a home and arrested its occupants. Five dogs were impounded in the second case, Summers said. All were said to be unavailable for adoption due to pending litigation, according to the release.

A Plant City “Mega Adoption Event” begins Friday, May 17, which OCAS states it will be attending. The second-annual event advertises more than 300 dogs up for adoption from nine shelters in surrounding counties. OCAS hopes to adopt out 150 pets over the three-day event, which ends Sunday.

Learn more and see a live tally of dogs and cats at the shelter by visiting the OCAS website.

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