Shelter without air-conditioning at capacity amidst hot spell in Florida

Staff doing its utmost to keep the animals cool

It’s hot outside, especially in central Florida, where a hot streak has been underway for weeks.

Unfortunately, animals being held at one busy shelter are having to endure the sweltering heat without the comfort of air-conditioning. Currently, there are a staggering number of homeless pets at the Orange County Animal Services (OCAS) facility – this week, WFTV News reported that the number of cats and dogs at this particular shelter is over 500, and they are all inside of a building that has no air-conditioning system to keep them cool.

Instead, animals at this shelter rely on a ventilation system and fans – it’s not perfect, but it helps reduce the temperature a “few degrees,” said Diane Summers, a shelter spokeswoman.

Dogs who struggle with the heat under the best of conditions (heavy coated dogs or those with stubby noses) are being watched closely by shelter staff.

The best option for these homeless pets is to leave the facility and get into a home, and the shelter is doing its part to entice people to adopt a pet.

Right now, in an effort to increase adoptions, fees have been reduced to a mere $10. Many of the animals are already vaccinated and altered – in other words, they are ready to be adopted.

This week, OCAS issued a press release about the critical crowding situation that the shelter is facing. According to OCAS

“On average, OCAS accepts as many as 50 dogs and cats a day – a number that can double during the summer. Elevated shelter populations place a considerable strain on resources, as well as space at shelters like OCAS, which is the county’s only open admission shelter – meaning they do not turn away any dog or cat. With the need to balance the health and well-being of hundreds of animals every single day, ensuring that the shelter remains just a temporary safe haven before an animal finds a loving home is mission critical.”

Not able to adopt? Consider:

  • Fostering an animal.
  • Volunteering at a shelter.
  • Sharing social media posts of featured animals.
  • Spay and neuter your pet.
  • Microchip and register all family pets