If you’re looking for a furry companion, the Summit County Animal Shelter may have the perfect option for you.
Over the past few months, the shelter has received a surplus of cats. With 28 cats currently available for adoption, its kennels are getting close to full.
Because of the large amount of cats, the shelter is offering reduced adoption fees for people wanting to adopt cats this month. Typically, adopting an adult cat can set you back $90. This month, cats older than 6 months can be adopted for half off that price. Cats 6 years of age, or older, are now $10.
Donna Corcel, an administrative clerk and humane educator who has been with the shelter for more than 16 years, said that unfortunately this is a trend with most shelters: Dogs get adopted more quickly than cats. Corcel said that here in Summit County, man’s best friend spends an average of three to four weeks in the shelter before being adopted. Cats, on the other hand, could be there for months.
Corcel said that this is often because cats are the more misunderstood of the two. A cat advocate herself, Corcel said they tend to be more self-sufficient than dogs, making them a good option for people who aren’t able to tend to the needs of dogs.
“They all have a story and they all have their own personalities,” she said.
In Summit County, the shoulder season is more than just the ebb and flow of tourism and business. The shelter also sees a shoulder season for adoption rates. Corcel said that September and October are usually slow months, and that during November — especially closer to the holidays — things start to pick up.
She remarked that cats make their way to the shelter for any number of reasons, but some are surrendered by their owners because they have trouble finding places to live in the county that will take animals. For this reason, the shelter keeps a list of housing in the county that will allow their tenants to have pets.
Sometimes owners surrender their pets because it has health issues that the owner may not understand.
“We try to educate people before they bring (their pets) here,” she said.
Corcel added that cats in particular will mark their territory on household items as a means of communicating that something is wrong. She also noted that it’s best to try and take the cat to the veterinarian to see if it is sick before surrendering the animal for this behavior.
But sometimes there’s nothing an owner can do and the shelter can’t help them in keeping a pet. Corcel said that in those cases it is always better to bring the pet to the shelter instead of simply abandoning the animal. The Summit County Animal Shelter will take as many animals as it can reasonably fit. It will even take animals from other shelters in the state that have become full, particularly if they are a “kill-shelter.”
“As long as it’s healthy and not mean, they have a place here,” Corcel said.
All strays brought into the shelter are also scanned for microchips. This often helps the shelter reconnect lost pets to concerned owners.
Contact the shelter at: 970-668-3230, or visit their website: