Animal Care Society has 100 pets on its waiting list

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Current data from animal shelters shows nearly sixty thousand more dogs and forty thousand more cats are available for adoption now than last year.


What do you want to know

  • 100,000 more dogs and cats in U.S. shelters are awaiting adoption this year than last
  • 60,000 additional dogs and 40,000 cats are available for adoption
  • Kentucky shelters are feeling the pressure
  • Many are facing an increase in the number of pets due to the pandemic

2021 has been a busy season for Wendy Bade and the Animal Care Society of Louisville.

“In 2021, we adopted nearly 550 pets compared to previous years,” Bade said. “I think our peak was around 250, so there were a lot more adoptions and people were very interested in adopting.”

Now that people are returning to work, animal shelters across the country are under pressure from the pandemic. Nearly 100,000 more dogs and cats in US shelters are awaiting adoption, according to the Best Friends Animal Society.

“We have a waiting list. We’re starting to see it throughout the pet rescue community where people are returning their pets now that COVID is sort of over and the return to life is [more] normal,” Bade said.

Animal Care Society has nearly 100 pets on its waiting list and can only house 25 dogs and 20 cats. For others like the Louisville Metro Animal Shelter, they’ve even waived redemption fees for owners who claim their stray animal to avoid reaching capacity.

“The effects of COVID, all COVID pets may not have a home anymore, it’s a little sad. But we will work with other shelters and welcome pets from other shelters,” said said Baden.

That’s not all – the pandemic has also caused a shortage of employees for the Animal Care Society. With other employers increasingly raising salaries, Bade said it was hard to keep up.

“It’s hard for us to raise the salary as we look down the street and see all the other people putting up signs to raise the salary to attract people. I think it takes a special person to work in animal rescue,” Bade said.

Bade’s work doesn’t stop just because the shelter is full. She continues to search for pets forever.

“I just have a passion for dogs in particular. The underdog who has no home. I really love being able to help animals find homes and look after them when they’re not have no home and that’s what keeps me coming back,” Bade said.

The Animal Care Society is still accepting donations, including cleaning supplies, dog and cat toys, and food.

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