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Carthage Humane Society Facing Obstacles, Overcrowding - KOAM TV 7

Carthage Humane Society Facing Obstacles, Overcrowding

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CARTHAGE, MISSOURI -

New management at the Carthage Humane Society is working to overcome obstacles.. as they are overcrowded with animals. 

Any time the Carthage Animal Control officer picks up an animal.. they are taken to the Carthage Humane Society. 

Greg Dagnan, Carthage Police Chief:"As of the last day in September, we had taken them about five hundred and five or six animals."

That's almost as much as the total number for all of 2016 (543) and 2017 (537).. and the year isn't over yet.

The shelter is not accepting any animals from the community, but they are taking animals that are brought in from the animal control.

Dalton Ikenberry, Carthage Humane Society:"Every single adoptable cage space is full. Every single cage that we have out here in the lobby area has a cat in it."

Meaning the shelter is currently housing 39 dogs and over 80 cats.

Dagnan:"You know, when you've got a mom and eleven kittens, well they've gotta go somewhere right, but that.. It's not like you're just taking them one or two cats a day, so that creates a real burden for the humane society."

But many of those animals aren't being held at the shelter since there just isn't room.

Ikenberry:"We have something like 10 cats in foster right now."

Another obstacle shelter management is facing is getting up to code with the Missouri Department of Agriculture. 

Deborah Bell took over as the shelter manager in October of last year.. after the old director resigned, shortly after several members of the community voiced concerns over conditions at the shelter. 

Ikenberry:"Things were kind of a mess that we were left with and we've been fighting against the tide the whole time. But, the floors, they were like, they had a lot of really bad cracks in them, and the urine and stuff like that was just soaking in and it was getting into that concrete. It was mostly just trying to get things up to code for the animals that we have already."

Funds for those renovations came from a 50 thousand dollar grant from the Steadley fund.. and will also pay for seven new kennel runs.. and a meet and greet room.

All things that could help the shelter grow. 

Ikenberry:"That's definitely something that we're gonna be moving towards cause once we've got the space, obviously we want to keep getting bigger and bigger."

Another large renovation the shelter needs is to the isolation area for sick animals.

The shelter currently has isolation separate isolation areas for dogs and cats, but Bell says both need major renovation. 

She hopes they can renovate the existing dog isolation area, to make it so it has a separate area for sick dogs, an area for sick cats, and an area for dogs with Parvo. 

Bell plans to apply for a 40 thousand dollar grant through the Steadley fund to cover those costs. 

The Carthage Police Department has created a loose agreement with the Joplin Humane Society.. where animals would be transported to Joplin in the event the Carthage Humane Society can't take an animal. 

The shelter is currently lowering their adoption fee for all cats to seven dollars per cat until their inventory is lowered. 

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