Horry County Animal Care Center among shelters on emergency due to overcrowding


HORRY COUNTY, SC (WMBF) – Animal shelters in South Carolina have declared a state of emergency, and many are running out of room to accommodate more animals.

Cpt. Justin Wyatt of the Horry County Police Department said that while overcrowding was common statewide, it is particularly an issue now, including at the Horry County Animal Care Center.

“Due to rising temperatures, the state of the economy and the growth of our population statewide, we have an unusual number of animals raised not only in Horry County but throughout the country. ‘State,’ Wyatt said.

Wyatt explained how heat plays a role in overcrowding.

“A lot of the dogs have escaped from potentially dangerous areas and have become stray,” he said. “And because they are stray, people notice them, their lack of water, their lack of food, they get dehydrated. It is therefore much easier to see that the dog is suffering from the heat.

Allison Gillespie, director of operations at All 4 Paws Animal Rescue on Pawleys Island, said she knew only too well what it was like to have a crowded shelter.

“We’re trying really hard to move them around, but we’re not making a hole,” she said of the animals to All 4 Paws.

Wyatt says there is a solution to this, and it requires help from the public.

“All shelters depend on the public,” he said. “We cannot do it without this partnership. We cannot adopt without their support. We cannot send relief without their support. And support doesn’t necessarily mean adoption. Sometimes it’s supplies, sometimes monetary donations, sometimes volunteering. There are many ways to help and help, but we need the partnership of the public.

Wyatt says fostering is also a great option.

Click here to help the Horry County Animal Care Center.

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Boyd S. Abbott

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