ELYRIA, Ohio — The Lorain County Dog Kennel is asking for help as the facility nears capacity. They’re looking for families who can provide forever homes for several dogs.
The holidays are always a busy time for the kennel, but volunteers say the situation is worse this year because of the pandemic.
“These dogs, they’re not with a rescue. It’s kind of their last chance,” said volunteer Tory Mittler. “We’ve got a lot of dogs coming in. Less owners coming to get their dogs. Less people adopting dogs.”
Kennel officials say they’ve also brought in a large number of dogs found without identification, making it difficult to return them to their owner.
The kennel is not funded by the county, so dog license fees and redemption fees keep the doors open. The deadline for dog licenses for 2022 is Jan. 31.
“If your dog is wearing a license when it’s picked up, they will call you and bring the dog to you with no fee,” said Mittler. “But if your dog has to come to the kennel and doesn’t have a license, it’s going to cost money.”
Right now, the kennel has 12 dogs they are looking to find homes for immediately. With one week until Christmas, they’re hoping to find homes for them before the holiday.
Kennel workers have been busy cleaning cages, making room for incoming dogs, assisting guests and attending to as many as 30 dogs in a day.
“We can’t say we’re full. If there’s a stray dog they have to make room,” Mittler said. “When we get full and we can’t get dogs out, and that can mean euthanization.”
Fortunately, euthanasia is a last resort that the kennel hasn’t had to do in more than 7 years. The focus is on finding a permanent home for all of the dogs at the kennel.
“A lot of times they’re dogs that people don’t want, they’ve let them go and haven’t come to get them,” Mittler said.
Adoption fees are $104, $80 for adoption and $24 for a dog license. Mittler said anyone who has concerns about redemptions fees can reach out to the kennel’s Facebook page to be connected with services to help with the cost.
The kennel can also connect dog owners with assistance for training, food and other care for pets.
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