Our shelter is a community resource center for animal related information and guidance. We serve as a haven for unwanted, lost, stray, neglected or abused animals, and also act as an adoption center. People interested in adopting an animal must complete an application and spend time discussing the animal they want to adopt with the shelter staff. This screening process allows the shelter staff time to educate people on the concerns of the Humane Society in an attempt to place animals in permanent, responsible, and loving homes. A spay/neuter deposit is required to adopt an unneutered animal. There are times when applicants are refused. The most common reasons for refusal usually involve landlords, wanting to give the animal as a gift, a history of past pets that have not had proper medical care, or a difference in philosophy over how a pet should be kept.
The shelter staff emphasizes how important it is to spay and neuter pets. Innumerable litters of puppies and kittens are received every year, far more animals than we can place in homes. Each animal is treated and evaluated individually; no predisposed time limit is set for any animal. Available cage space, the animal's condition, and how well it adapts to a kennel environment all determine its length of stay in the shelter. The shelter manager, with the input from the shelter staff, will consider all these factors in making the decision as to what is best for each animal.
Animals are euthanized by a painless injection of sodium pentobarbital. The procedure must ensure minimal stress to the animal and the staff member. This shelter uses various means of tranquilization as an aid to euthanasia. We are familiar with the alternatives which are offered, but unfortunately, these alternatives are not solutions. Building more cages may help temporarily but will not make a lasting difference. Promoting adoptions without forethought can create further problems. Someone who must be convinced to adopt an animal could easily change their mind. We do not need more homes, we need fewer animals.
The Humane Society of Kent County, Inc. received on the average 1400 dogs and cats per year and has placed approximately 22% of these animals into new homes. Where do these animals come from and why do people surrender their animals? There are many reasons: A sudden or drastic change in life-style may occur. It may be a serious illness, divorce, death of a spouse, moving or getting a pet as an unexpected gift. It may be a concerned citizen who brings in a stray. Too often, however, the shelter staff is confronted by an individual who is disposing of a pet for what seem very minor reasons. Often in our society the pet is regarded as a temporary, disposable item, not a permanent part of the family. Too often people acquire an animal on the spur of the moment without careful consideration about the commitment of years, money, training, care, and loving attention that the animal justly deserves.
When an animal is surrendered, it becomes the legal property of the Humane Society. The staff tries to obtain as complete a history as possible. If a serious problem has been recorded in a history, an older dog or cat who has never been housebroken, a biter, an overly aggressive animal- these animals will not be available for adoption but will be humanely euthanized. If there is a problem that is not that serious, it will be listed on the admission form, and the shelter staff will discuss the problem with potential new owners during the adoption counseling process.
Unfortunately, most people do not consider an animal over two years of age a good candidate for adoption, but come for a puppy or kitten. An older animal can be a wonderful choice for a companion. Many times these animals are already spayed or neutered, housebroken, or trained.
Every member of the shelter staff looks forward to helping, educating and counseling prospective adopters, so that they know that the right animal is selected for that individual. Adoption counseling is one of the most important parts of the job. The difficult part of this job is that not every animal will find the permanent home that it so justly deserves.
To protect the candidates for adoption, a potential new owner must be eighteen years of age, and will be asked for proof of landlord approval in the case of renters. Potential adopters sign an adoption contract, which authorizes the HSKC to inspect that animal at any reasonable time it chooses to do so. Individuals are refused for adoption when there is any doubt that the placement would not be in the animal's best interest. Unfortunately this can sometimes lead to emotional responses from the public who do not understand that the HSKC has a commitment to the animal first and foremost.
A spay/neuter deposit is also requested for all adopted unneutered animals. The spay/neuter prepayment helps to guarantee the spay/neuter of the pet. When proof of spaying or neutering is submitted, the money is refunded either to the adopter or directly to the veterinarian. Adopters are protecting the future health of their new animal and they are being consistent with our humane goal.
The prepayment amount requested is a very reasonable price when you consider that most pet owners could not possibly assign a monetary value to the love, companionship and enrichment a pet brings to their lives.
For those for whom there is no second chance, euthanasia is accomplished with a swift and painless injection. This is a very difficult part of the job, made more difficult by the great public ignorance as to the size of the surplus pet problem. Every litter does hurt, more than a bit. One female unspayed cat can be potentially responsible for fifty-two offspring in a single year. And, unfortunately, there is the national statistic: 13.5 million perfectly healthy dogs, cats, puppies and kittens are euthanized every year.
To see the adoptable pets for Humane Society of Kent County click here
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Humane Society of Kent County Location
Below is a map for Humane Society of Kent County, please call for specific directions.
***Note: PO Boxes will not show correctly on the map below.