Adoptions up in June as litters pour into the shelter

Published 6:21 pm Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Feline lovers in the market for a kitten shouldn’t wait until Christmas to give the gift of a pet — now’s the time.

According to Animal Control Chief Billy Lassiter, the Betsy Bailey Nelson Animal Control Facility saw great adoption numbers in June, when 74 cats or kittens were adopted. But when the number of cats and kittens coming into the shelter in June topped out at 135, that points to an overpopulation problem.

“People are bringing them in and dropping them off.  We’re also trapping in several areas of the county,” Lassiter said. “Right now, we’ve only got about 15. Last week, there was probably 30 or more.”

Animal control staff only trap cats/kittens at the request of residents who have an issue with cat overpopulation. Lassiter said animal control has a waiting list of requests, as staff can only bring in and house a certain number of animals, and some of these colonies can have 40 to 50 cats.

Mid-summer is prime kitten season, he said.

“That’s always the biggest numbers, this time of year, because they can have three litters a year,” Lassiter said. “If they’re not getting fixed, they’re just adding to the population.”

Last month, the Humane Society of Beaufort County ran a special on cat/kitten adoptions at the shelter, contributing $20 of the normally $55 fee. Lassiter said he thought the lower rate of $35 helped to boost adoptions. Currently, there are 15 kittens and one adult cat at the shelter.

The Betsy Bailey Nelson Animal Control Facility is located at 3931 U.S. Highway 264 East in Washington. Its hours are Mondays through Fridays, 1-5:30 p.m., and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.