Owner-surrendered pets low for 4th of July weekend, shelters filling up with strays

AIKEN COUNTY, S.C. (WJBF) – Animal surrenders, for Independence Day weekend, were at an all time low in Aiken County.

Generally shelters expect to see an increase in the number of owner surrendered animals during the summer months.

However, 2 local shelters are pleased to see the numbers actually dropped-off during the long holiday weekend.

Fireworks may be gorgeous to look at, but the loud boom has sent some scared pets running.

“People just leave them in the backyard and a lot of times, if a dog is that scared and motivated they can jump fences. They can get out of your house,” said SPCA Albrecht Center for Animal Welfare Community Outreach Director Claire Roberson.

Animal control picked up several dogs on Independence Day.

Still, most of the dogs surrendered this year, have been by the people who have found them after the got loose.

“We actually surprisingly only got one in last week,” Roberson told WJBF NewsChannel 6.

“I have seen quiet a bit of Facebook posts, where people would see animals at their residence or animals wandering the roadways.” Chief Bobby Arthurs, of the Aiken County Animal Shelter, said.

Shelter employees believe the dogs got out after the fireworks, so there’s a good chance their owners are looking for them.

While both shelters are constantly checking social media, they also have posters of missing pets are up and are picking-up strays.

“Just yesterday I saw one run across the street and almost get hit by about 4 or 5 cars,” Roberson said. “We tried to track him down and find his owner, but we couldn’t find the dog. We are hoping he maybe just ran back home.”

Empty pins don’t stay empty very long during this time of year.

Both the SPCA Albrecht Center for Animal Welfare and Aiken County Animal Shelter didn’t get many owner surrenders before the holiday weekend.

“It is surprising, but we do have a lot of stray animals that are coming in.” Arthurs said.

If your pet got out of your yard during the fireworks, we encourage you to drop by the shelter and see if your pet is there.

You can also check the ‘Aiken Pets Reunited’ page on Facebook, to visit the page click here. 

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