OPINION

LETTER: Looking for a pet?

Crystal Swann Blackdeer/Tonganoxie

To the editor:

People may have heard that the Kansas City area pet shelters are at or above capacity. That’s not just a big-city issue.

Leavenworth County Humane Society in Lansing has 10 dog kennels and space for 30 cats, comfortably. When needed, there are overflow kennels in the garage for dogs and ferret cages that can be set up for cats/kittens. Those are planned to be short-term measures, not long-term housing.

Instead, for the past two months, the organization has been caring for between 12 and 15 dogs at the shelter. Last week, the dog population shot up to 19, not counting the dogs off-site in foster care, in boarding or in training at the U.S. Penitentiary in Leavenworth.

Not to be outdone, the cat population is booming as well. In addition to 30-plus adult cats, the largely volunteer organization is caring for more than 40 kittens, some at the shelter and some in foster care. 

Those in LCHS, Inc. care are all found dogs and cats from contracted cities, to include Basehor, Tonganoxie, Lansing, Linwood and Bonner Springs, or those found in unincorporated Leavenworth County. If someone has had a pet go missing in the last few months, they should go by the shelter to see if their dog or cat is there waiting.

Since July, LCHS, Inc. has been unable to accept nearly all owner surrendered pets due to space restrictions. In those cases, people seeking to re-home are directed to other no-kill shelters/rescues or owners are encouraged to undertake a DIY re-homing process.

In addition to the pet numbers surging, many volunteers are less available due to return to in-person school and the office. Volunteers are absolutely critical to LCHS, Inc. operations.

The shelter is still seeking the right candidate to fill a position that opened at the beginning of May. For more information and applications, email LvnCoHS@live.com. Volunteers and employees participate in a detailed training program to ensure safe and healthy operations for pets and people at the shelter.

Most of the pets who are old enough are ready to go home with a family – spayed or neutered, vaccinated and microchipped. Adoption fees range from $90 for adult cats to $250 for small young dogs or puppies. Adoption application is available by request or by visiting the facility at 100 W. Gilman Road, Lansing. Hours are Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday from noon to 6 p.m., Friday from 1-7 p.m. and Saturday from 1-5 p.m.  

Pets are listed on www.Petfinder.com for those who want to preview the dogs and cats in LCHS, Inc. care.

– Crystal Swann Blackdeer/Tonganoxie

Crystal Swann Blackdeer is the executive director of the Leavenworth County Humane Society, Inc.