A problem that needs ‘fixing’

Published 5:47 pm Saturday, July 25, 2015

Our nation, state and locality are facing an epidemic. For years, the number of those affected has been rising steadily, spiking particularly in the summer.

The disease is the institutionalization of stray animals. According to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, approximately 7.6 million companion animals (mostly cats and dogs) are placed in animal shelters nationwide. Approximately 2.7 million of these animals are euthanized.

In the summer, it is vitally important that pet owners ensure their animals are housed in cool environments with plenty of food and water. It is theorized that most pets run away in the summer. This is due to dogs or cats being overheated, hungry or thirsty at home alone while their owners are at work or on vacation.

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Another major contributor to the problem of stray animals: Many of the animals that get away from their owners aren’t fixed. Just about every neighborhood in Suffolk can attest to the problem of feral cats running around unchecked.

When fertile domesticated animals escape, they can procreate with feral animals, thus adding to the number of stray animals out there for Animal Control to pick up.

The number of animals that are placed in shelters, where their most likely final fate is to be euthanized, is rising too quickly. So please, spay or neuter your pets and make sure they are well taken care of, with valid tags and collars with an up-to-date address.

There are too many of man’s best friends locked in shelters.