BY NANCY GAGNET | MIRROR REPORTER — Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, even the animals at the Toledo Humane Society have had to make adjustments.
Although the organization falls under the “essential business” category, which allows them to remain open, operations have been scaled back significantly, said marketing director Abbey Hall.
“As the pandemic unfolded, things changed rapidly and evolved each week, and right now we have suspended all non-urgent operations,” she said.
That means that the facility is closed to both visitors and volunteers, and animal adoptions are taking place remotely. The number of animals housed in the facility has also been significantly decreased since many were moved out of the building and into foster homes or permanent adopted homes when the pandemic first broke.
“We literally only have a few animals left in the building,” Hall said.
Currently, the organization is focused on responding to animal cruelty cases and treating animals with medical conditions. Mone-tary donations are especially welcome during this time, since those situations can be quite costly.
“We had a female husky with six puppies that were all dying because of parvo. We are happy to report that after a week of treatment they are doing better, but it’s extremely costly, so the cases that we are getting are a big financial hit to us,” Hall said.
Some pets have been surrendered to the organization because of the COVID-19 pandemic and those animals are going into foster homes, she said.
“We’ve had a few animals unfortunately surrendered to us since people lost their jobs and had to move back in with parents and couldn’t take their pets. It’s sad to see because they don’t want to give up their animals, but some are left with no choice,” she said.
Foster families do not enter the building, but instead pick up animals curbside.
“We’re having them pull up to the door and if there is a right match, we get them the items that they need and send them on their way,” Hall explained.
While foster families are not obligated to adopt a pet, many either choose to do so or are active in finding a suitable home with a family member or friend. Those pets moving from foster to permanent adoptions are also handled online.
“If they decide to adopt, they are paying by card over the phone. They pull up to the door and we take a picture from a distance, and we give them their medical packets and paperwork,” Hall said.