The El Paso animal shelter on Wednesday issued a call for help because it was filled to capacity with lost pets following the Fourth of July holiday.
The city Animal Services department made an “SOS,” or “Support Our Shelter” in this case, with more than 500 animals housed at the facility.
“We are well over full,” said Ramon Herrera, a city spokesman.
Animal Services urged residents to go to the shelter to find lost pets, adopt, foster or donate supplies, such as canned puppy or kitten food, dry dog or cat food, new towels or blankets.
The shelter is normally considered full with 450 animals, though the facility can find ways to house extra animals, Herrera said.
“It is very busy with people looking for lost pets,” Herrera said. “It will get busier in the afternoon with a lot more people coming in to drop off pets that they found.”
The day after July 4 is historically busy at the shelter as workers deal with calls about pets that ran away after being scared by fireworks, officials said
More: Animal Services prepares for pets lost over July 4 holiday
Herrera said the shelter is doing something it hasn’t done before—waving the $60 impoundment fee for dogs and cats and the daily handling fee of $18 until Sunday.
The waiver of fees is part of an effort to help residents reunite with their pets, Animal Services said in a news release.
Through the summer, pet adoption fees are reduced to $30 for dogs and $5 for cats.
Additional fees will be charged for microchips, rabies vaccines and licenses.
Typically, animals with a microchip or a collar are held at the shelter for five days before the adoption process is started, Herrera said. Animals without identification are held for three days.
The Animal Services Shelter is open 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily and located at 5001 Fred Wilson Ave. across from Fort Bliss National Cemetery.
Information: 212-7297 (PAWS) or www.elpasotexas.gov/animal-services
Daniel Borunda may be reached at 546-6102; firstname.lastname@example.org; @BorundaDaniel on Twitter.