Debby washes in animals

Animal control officers pick up stray dogs, cats

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - After days of rain from now Post-Tropical Cyclone Debby, the Duval County Animal Care and Protective Services said more animals have come washing in.

"We are absolutely full to capacity, and we will continue to have increases in intake with the weather," said Scott Trebatoski, the Animal Care and Control's Division Chief.

Trebatoski said flooding has brought in stray cats and dogs out of their hiding places, forcing them into the streets where they have been picked up by animal control officers.

Trebatoski said officers have picked up more than double the usual number of animals since Debby passed through.

"Now we are caught in the dilemma with full capacity and dogs still coming in," he said.

To encourage adoptions, the county has lowered adoption fees to $20.

Lower fees brought in Emerald Quiros and her family.

"We heard that they sometimes euthanize them, which is kind of sad," she said.

The county is asking anyone missing their pets to visit the shelter to claim them. Until then, the county is working with foster homes and sending other animals to rescue shelters.

But Trebatoski said they simply need more families like the Quiros.

"She really wanted an animal and we figured the shelter is the best place for one," he said. "Our biggest fear is that if these animals don't get adopted and we keep getting dogs in, space becomes an issue and when space becomes an issue, it puts these animals at risk of dying in the shelter."

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