(Submitted by Wood County Humane Society)
The Wood County Humane Society placed a record number of animals into their forever homes for the third consecutive year in 2017.
During the past calendar year, the local non-profit adopted out a total of 941 animals, up nearly 20% from 2016 when it adopted out 790 animals.
Of the 987 animals placed into their adopted homes this past year, 305 were dogs (up 16% from 2016 when the organization placed 262 dogs), 634 were cats (up 21% from 2016 when the organization placed 524 cats), and 2 were “Other.”
In addition to significantly increasing its number of adoptions for the year, the organization also decreased the mean length of stay for both dogs and cats thanks to a more streamlined adoption process, among other factors. For dogs, the average length of stay was just 16 days, down nearly 16% from 2016 when the length of stay was 19 days. For puppies, the decrease was even more dramatic—down 57% from 14 to 6 days in 2017.
For cats, the average length of stay decreased from 29 to 25 days, a decrease of nearly 14%. The average length of stay for kittens decreased 35% from 17 to 11 days in 2017.
Length of stay has many benefits with respect to animal welfare, sheltering costs, and a shelter’s capacity to save lives. A decreased length of stay can help to increase quality of life for shelter animals, especially those who experience anxiety in a shelter setting. It can enable a shelter organization to assist more animals within a calendar year. And in some cases, it can decrease the risk of illness in shelter animals and help to prevent any behavioral disorders that might result from an extended stay in a shelter environment.
Overall intake numbers for the organization continued to rise in 2017, with 328 dogs (up from 275 in 2016) and 725 cats (up from 600 in 2016).