Pandemic pets being returned causes animal shelters to near capacity

This follows an increase in pet adoptions during the pandemic

After an increase in pet adoptions during the pandemic, officials at several animal shelters across the state say they’re nearing their capacity and have seen a spike in the returns of those animals to the shelters — an unfortunate consequence of the return to work, travel and hectic schedules.

At the Franklin Township animal shelter in Somerset, senior animal control officer and shelter coordinator Katie Northaus said there was a big increase in animal adoptions when the pandemic hit. But as restrictions started to ease, there was an uptick in owners returning those same animals. “They’re not home enough, back to work, lifestyles have changed, they moved, they lost their job and had to move to another apartment that pets aren’t allowed,” said Nordhaus.

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