Euthanasia on the table as Pima Animal Care Center runs out of space
TUCSON, Ariz. (KGUN) — The week following July 4 is historically the busiest week of the year for the Pima Animal Care Center, as people bring back lost dogs that were likely startled and ran away due to fireworks.
Over the past few years, PACC has received over 75 pets a day after the holidays, and this year expected to see an additional 400 this week.
With kennel space full and growing health concerns from overcrowding, PACC Director Monica Dangler, in consultation with county administration, said she may need to begin euthanizing dogs.
“The decision to euthanize is heartbreaking,” Dangler said. “The last thing PACC wants to do is take this step. Ultimately, we have to make the decision that benefits as many animals as possible, keeping as many animals safe and healthy as possible in the hope that they can be reunited with their families.”
If PACC were to start euthanizing dogs, it would be the first time since 2017.
The shelter was already overcrowded before the holidays: according to the PACC, the center was already housing three to four times the usual number of dogs it would have during the summer.
Some risks of shelter overcrowding include high stress, aggressive behavior, and the spread of disease.
PACC asks the public to help in several ways:
- If you find a stray dog, check with your neighborhood before bringing it to the shelter; often stray animals come from a neighboring house
- If you choose to temporarily restrain a stray animal you have found, PACC will provide you with supplies free of charge
- If you lose a pet, immediately file a lost pet report
“We implore the residents of Pima County to stop by the shelter to claim their lost pets or adopt or adopt. You will literally save a life,” Dangler said.
If you are able to adopt a PACC pet, the shelter has issued a coupon for free adoptions.
Anne Simmons is a digital content producer for KGUN 9. Anne made her television debut while still a student at the University of Arizona. Prior to joining KGUN, she managed several public access television stations in the Bay Area and worked as a video producer in the nonprofit sector. Share your story ideas and important issues with Anne via email [email protected] or by connecting to Instagram or LinkedIn.