What kind of pet owner are you?

Posted: Friday, March 30, 2001

Workers at the Kenai and Soldotna animal shelters deal with two kinds of pet owners: those who are responsible and those who aren't.

The responsible ones supervise their pets; they make sure their pets are spayed or neutered; they keep their pets well fed and well watered; they make sure their pets are safe; and they make sure their pets have all the necessary vaccinations.

The irresponsible ones keep shelter workers busy. They are the ones who let their pets run loose, who don't spay or neuter their animals, who don't take the time to keep their pets healthy.

Irresponsible pet owners and unwanted pets create big problems for the shelters.

When people take ownership of an animal, but don't neuter or spay it, the problem of pet overpopulation gets worse. Unwanted or uncared for pets often are impounded, and the shelters have more animals than they can find good homes for.

"People need to turn off the faucet that provides these animals," said Brett Reid, one of two full-time workers at the Kenai shelter.

 

The Kenai Animal Shelter in March was featuring 10-week-old female yellow Labrador retriever mix puppies for $88.20 each. Fees include spay surgery, vaccinations and license. For more information, visit the shelter on Willow Street or call 283-7353.

Photo by M. Scott Moon

Reid is disgusted when people give their new puppy a home for a week or two, and then decide not to care for it. He does not think much of people who ignore the problem, or make it worse by failing to take care of their pets.

Marianne Clark agreed. She is the one full-time worker at the Soldotna shelter; she has a part-time assistant during the summer.

"I think it's sad when people drop off unwanted litters of puppies and kittens. People think they will find a home, but the shelter can't provide homes for all of them," said Clark.

Clark and Reid agree that their shelters are not the place for pet owners to leave their unwanted animals in the hope the shelters will find good homes for them.

People who are trying to get rid of their pets should try on their own to find a responsible caretaker who will spay and neuter the animals and take good care of them.

Proper care of animals includes feeding the animal at the proper time, making sure it has water at all times, keeping it healthy, and supervising it.

One of many challenges the shelters face is pets outside of city limits.

"Out of 102 phone calls in the past month of February, I had to tell 82 of them to call the borough, because the cases were outside the city limits. So only 20 of the calls were actually for the city of Soldotna," Clark said.

There is no animal control outside of the organized cities within the Kenai Peninsula Borough.

Last year, the Kenai shelter received 1,675 animals, of which 297 were adopted, 204 went back to their owner, 311 were dead on arrival, 11 were wildlife to be released, and 852 were destroyed.

During the same year, the Soldotna shelter received 638 animals, of which 135 were returned to their owners, 168 were adopted, one was dead on arrival, and 232 were destroyed.

Adding to those numbers are 102 released wildlife and miscellaneous animals going through the shelter.

Despite the high numbers, Reid and Clark do see some improvements. People are starting to take the role of a caring pet owner more seriously, which encourages shelter workers.

"The best thing about working in the shelter is seeing the changes and differences in helping the community," said Reid.

Clark shares the same opinion with Reid.

"I love to help the public with animal problems and the animals themselves. I'm just tired of people wanting us to handle their irresponsibilities." Clark said.

For people who want to be responsible pet owners, the shelters have pets available for adoption.

The Kenai shelter's fees for adopting animals range from from $55 to $90, which includes a city license fee of $2, vaccinations, and the spay or neuter surgery.

The adoption fees at the Soldotna shelter also vary. The fee for a male dog is $74; for a female dog, $84; for a male cat, $47; and for a female cat, $62. The fee includes having the animal spayed or neutered, and vaccinations. If the animal already has the vaccinations and has been fixed, then there is no charge.

The Kenai shelter also welcomes volunteers. Reid mentions people like to help out in the shelter to become more familiar and experienced with animals.

"If you want to become a volunteer, then just come on down and ask!" laughed Reid.

For more information contact:

The Soldotna Animal Shelter at 262-3969 or stop by 205 South Kobuk, open Monday-Friday 8pm-4:30pm or Saturday 10am-1pm

The Kenai Animal Shelter at 283-7353 or stop by 510 Willow Street, open random hours

BYLINE1:By KASI MORSE

Workers at the Kenai and Soldotna animal shelters deal with two kinds of pet owners: those who are responsible and those who aren't.

The responsible ones supervise their pets; they make sure their pets are spayed or neutered; they keep their pets well fed and well watered; they make sure their pets are safe; and they make sure their pets have all the necessary vaccinations.

The irresponsible ones keep shelter workers busy. They are the ones who let their pets run loose, who don't spay or neuter their animals, who don't take the time to keep their pets healthy.

Irresponsible pet owners and unwanted pets create big problems for the shelters.

When people take ownership of an animal, but don't neuter or spay it, the problem of pet overpopulation gets worse. Unwanted or uncared for pets often are impounded, and the shelters have more animals than they can find good homes for.

"People need to turn off the faucet that provides these animals," said Brett Reid, one of two full-time workers at the Kenai shelter.

Reid is disgusted when people give their new puppy a home for a week or two, and then decide not to care for it. He does not think much of people who ignore the problem, or make it worse by failing to take care of their pets.

Marianne Clark agreed. She is the one full-time worker at the Soldotna shelter; she has a part-time assistant during the summer.

"I think it's sad when people drop off unwanted litters of puppies and kittens. People think they will find a home, but the shelter can't provide homes for all of them," said Clark.

Clark and Reid agree that their shelters are not the place for pet owners to leave their unwanted animals in the hope the shelters will find good homes for them.

People who are trying to get rid of their pets should try on their own to find a responsible caretaker who will spay and neuter the animals and take good care of them.

Proper care of animals includes feeding the animal at the proper time, making sure it has water at all times, keeping it healthy, and supervising it.

One of many challenges the shelters face is pets outside of city limits.

"Out of 102 phone calls in the past month of February, I had to tell 82 of them to call the borough, because the cases were outside the city limits. So only 20 of the calls were actually for the city of Soldotna," Clark said.

There is no animal control outside of the organized cities within the Kenai Peninsula Borough.

Last year, the Kenai shelter received 1,675 animals, of which 297 were adopted, 204 went back to their owner, 311 were dead on arrival, 11 were wildlife to be released, and 852 were destroyed.

During the same year, the Soldotna shelter received 638 animals, of which 135 were returned to their owners, 168 were adopted, one was dead on arrival, and 232 were destroyed.

Adding to those numbers are 102 released wildlife and miscellaneous animals going through the shelter.

Despite the high numbers, Reid and Clark do see some improvements. People are starting to take the role of a caring pet owner more seriously, which encourages shelter workers.

"The best thing about working in the shelter is seeing the changes and differences in helping the community," said Reid.

Clark shares the same opinion with Reid.

"I love to help the public with animal problems and the animals themselves. I'm just tired of people wanting us to handle their irresponsibilities." Clark said.

For people who want to be responsible pet owners, the shelters have pets available for adoption.

The Kenai shelter's fees for adopting animals range from from $55 to $90, which includes a city license fee of $2, vaccinations, and the spay or neuter surgery.

The adoption fees at the Soldotna shelter also vary. The fee for a male dog is $74; for a female dog, $84; for a male cat, $47; and for a female cat, $62. The fee includes having the animal spayed or neutered, and vaccinations. If the animal already has the vaccinations and has been fixed, then there is no charge.

The Kenai shelter also welcomes volunteers. Reid mentions people like to help out in the shelter to become more familiar and experienced with animals.

"If you want to become a volunteer, then just come on down and ask!" laughed Reid.

For more information contact:

The Soldotna Animal Shelter at 262-3969 or stop by 205 South Kobuk, open Monday-Friday 8pm-4:30pm or Saturday 10am-1pm

The Kenai Animal Shelter at 283-7353 or stop by 510 Willow Street, open random hours

CREDIT:Clarion file photo

CAPTION:A pair of loose dogs cozy up to Soldotna Animal Control officer Marianne Clark.

HEAD:What kind of pet owner are you?

BYLINE1:By KASI MORSE

Workers at the Kenai and Soldotna animal shelters deal with two kinds of pet owners: those who are responsible and those who aren't.

The responsible ones supervise their pets; they make sure their pets are spayed or neutered; they keep their pets well fed and well watered; they make sure their pets are safe; and they make sure their pets have all the necessary vaccinations.

The irresponsible ones keep shelter workers busy. They are the ones who let their pets run loose, who don't spay or neuter their animals, who don't take the time to keep their pets healthy.

Irresponsible pet owners and unwanted pets create big problems for the shelters.

When people take ownership of an animal, but don't neuter or spay it, the problem of pet overpopulation gets worse. Unwanted or uncared for pets often are impounded, and the shelters have more animals than they can find good homes for.

"People need to turn off the faucet that provides these animals," said Brett Reid, one of two full-time workers at the Kenai shelter.

Reid is disgusted when people give their new puppy a home for a week or two, and then decide not to care for it. He does not think much of people who ignore the problem, or make it worse by failing to take care of their pets.

Marianne Clark agreed. She is the one full-time worker at the Soldotna shelter; she has a part-time assistant during the summer.

"I think it's sad when people drop off unwanted litters of puppies and kittens. People think they will find a home, but the shelter can't provide homes for all of them," said Clark.

Clark and Reid agree that their shelters are not the place for pet owners to leave their unwanted animals in the hope the shelters will find good homes for them.

People who are trying to get rid of their pets should try on their own to find a responsible caretaker who will spay and neuter the animals and take good care of them.

Proper care of animals includes feeding the animal at the proper time, making sure it has water at all times, keeping it healthy, and supervising it.

One of many challenges the shelters face is pets outside of city limits.

"Out of 102 phone calls in the past month of February, I had to tell 82 of them to call the borough, because the cases were outside the city limits. So only 20 of the calls were actually for the city of Soldotna," Clark said.

There is no animal control outside of the organized cities within the Kenai Peninsula Borough.

Last year, the Kenai shelter received 1,675 animals, of which 297 were adopted, 204 went back to their owner, 311 were dead on arrival, 11 were wildlife to be released, and 852 were destroyed.

During the same year, the Soldotna shelter received 638 animals, of which 135 were returned to their owners, 168 were adopted, one was dead on arrival, and 232 were destroyed.

Adding to those numbers are 102 released wildlife and miscellaneous animals going through the shelter.

Despite the high numbers, Reid and Clark do see some improvements. People are starting to take the role of a caring pet owner more seriously, which encourages shelter workers.

"The best thing about working in the shelter is seeing the changes and differences in helping the community," said Reid.

Clark shares the same opinion with Reid.

"I love to help the public with animal problems and the animals themselves. I'm just tired of people wanting us to handle their irresponsibilities." Clark said.

For people who want to be responsible pet owners, the shelters have pets available for adoption.

The Kenai shelter's fees for adopting animals range from from $55 to $90, which includes a city license fee of $2, vaccinations, and the spay or neuter surgery.

The adoption fees at the Soldotna shelter also vary. The fee for a male dog is $74; for a female dog, $84; for a male cat, $47; and for a female cat, $62. The fee includes having the animal spayed or neutered, and vaccinations. If the animal already has the vaccinations and has been fixed, then there is no charge.

The Kenai shelter also welcomes volunteers. Reid mentions people like to help out in the shelter to become more familiar and experienced with animals.

"If you want to become a volunteer, then just come on down and ask!" laughed Reid.

For more information contact:

The Soldotna Animal Shelter at 262-3969 or stop by 205 South Kobuk, open Monday-Friday 8pm-4:30pm or Saturday 10am-1pm

The Kenai Animal Shelter at 283-7353 or stop by 510 Willow Street, open random hours



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