Coweta Animal Control is offering half price and free adoptions of cats and dogs in an effort to relieve overcrowding at the animal shelter.
For a limited time, any animal that has been at the shelter over 60 days can be adopted free of charge. At the time of adoption, animals are spayed or neutered, and receive dewormer and their first round of shots. They are also examined by a vet and receive a microchip that contains their information if they are ever lost.
Animals that have been at the shelter less than 60 days can be adopted for 50 percent off the standard adoption fee. With the discount, the adoption fee is $35 for cats and $63 for dogs.
The shelter will be open extended hours this Saturday. Normal hours are 9 a.m.-1 p.m, with adoptions from 10 a.m.-noon. This Saturday, the shelter will be open until 2 p.m.
The Coweta Animal Shelter is located at 91 Selt Road, Newnan, off Hospital Road. Weekday hours are 8 a.m.-5 p.m., with adoption hours from 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
In July, the shelter began offering free adoptions for animals at the shelter more than 120 days, and half-price adoptions for those there more than 90 days.
But there are still more animals coming into the shelter than are leaving by adoption, said Warden Bill McKenzie, director of Coweta County Animal Control.
“We are extremely slammed right now with cats and kittens,” McKenzie said. “If people are looking for a cat or a kitten, this is an extremely great time to get a deal for a forever pet. We just need people to come and look and adopt.”
The shelter was designed for 92 cats and 92 dogs. On Thursday afternoon, there 171 cats and 143 dogs.
McKenzie said he’s not sure why so many animals are coming to the shelter. The shelter quit accepting “owner surrenders” years ago.
McKenzie urges Cowetans who have missing pets to check the shelter first – in person. “When you lose your pet, please report it to us because we may have it. Bring a picture, come to the shelter yourself. Don’t pick up the phone and call,” he said.
Animal control officers on site will help you look through the animals to find your missing pet, he said.
McKenzie said he’s seen posts on social media from people who find a stray dog and don’t want to take it to animal control because they are afraid it will be euthanized. Instead, they feed the dog and try to find it a home.
Technically, once you feed an animal for three days it belongs to you and you’re responsible for it, McKenzie said. Animals that are brought in as strays by the public or picked up from animal control become property of the county after three days and can be adopted out, but usually animals aren’t put up for adoption for seven days, to give the owners a bit longer to reclaim them.
As for animals being put down, it’s something that happens rarely at Coweta Animal Control.
“Ordinarily the only animals that we will put down are those that we just absolutely have to, because they are either vicious or it is a bitE case where it cannot be adopted out or I have a court order,” McKenzie said. Animals may also be euthanized if they are so sick or injured that the vet recommends it.
“All of us are trying to do our best not to have to put down any more animals than we just absolutely have to,” he said.
For more information, contact the shelter at 770-254-3735. You can view some of the animals available at the shelter online at Petharbor.com, but the list is not exhaustive.