Austin Animal Center temporarily limits consumption

AUSTIN, Texas — The Austin Animal Center has temporarily restricted pet admission as it currently has more than 700 dogs at the shelter. This includes nearly 70 of them living in temporary crates due to space issues.

Effective Sept. 13, the AAC said admission will take place in emergencies, such as when an animal is injured or poses a clear risk to public safety.

“We are temporarily restricting intake now to ensure we can continue to provide the level of animal care our community has come to expect,” said Don Bland, Director of Animal Services. “When all the animals in our care can be placed in regular kennels instead of relying on temporary crates, we can open them up completely again.”

Since AAC became a no-kill shelter in 2011, it has only had to restrict admission three times: once in 2020 due to COVID-19 and twice in 2016 due to capacity issues. .

The shelter enlisted the help of the community at the end of August during a national Clear the Shelter event and was able to find new homes for 63 cats and 47 dogs. However, overcrowding remains a problem.

“Shelters across the country are struggling. We really need community members to foster or adopt a dog,” said Deputy City Manager of Austin Stephanie Hayden-Howard. “Maintaining our non-killer status takes a village, and our city shelter can’t do it without you.”

Adoption fees are still being waived by the ACC and there will be a “Clear the Crates” event this Saturday, September 17. The event will begin at 10 a.m. and each dog available for adoption remaining in a crate will be located in a tent on the front lawn.

For residents who need help with an injured animal, AAFC suggests:

  • Dial 311 and ask to speak to an animal protection officer.
  • Wait for the officer to pick up the animal. Do not bring it to the shelter.

AAFC is currently open for adoptions Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. The shelter will reopen for adoptions on Sundays starting September 25.

Benjamin M. Yerger