If you can, adopt a pet

Published 9:22 am Friday, September 4, 2015

Without a doubt, Bogalusa and Washington Parish have stray dog problems.

All you have to do to figure that out is to drive the roads and observe. Packs of strays seem to appear everywhere.

What makes it so sad is that there is no enough food for all these animals to sustain themselves. I’ll never forget driving through the old Walmart parking lot a few weeks ago and seeing a beautiful Labrador mix dead on the pavement. Obviously, it had died of starvation because it was just skin and bones. Seeing something like that is hard to take for any kind of animal lover.

To prevent future animals from needlessly starving in the future, the Magnolia chapter of the Humane Society of Louisiana and the city of Bogalusa are teaming up to host a pet adoption day Saturday at the Bogalusa Animal Control facility from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The Animal Control facility is located at 214 Arkansas St., directly behind Bogalusa City Hall.

I think it’s a great thing the entities are doing. The dogs will make someone a wonderful pet.

All the work to make the animals adoptable will be done for you. Adopted dogs will be given a distemper/parvo vaccination, a bath, a collar, and leash and a toy. The adoption fee is just $10.

Also, dogs are required by state law to be spayed or neutered within 30 days of adoption. The Magnolia chapter program for such a procedure is $65, which includes a rabies vaccination. Or any veterinarian in town can perform the procedure. Proof of the procedure must be submitted to Bogalusa Animal Control.

In my opinion, the Magnolia chapter is a group of unsung heroes who try and save as many animals as they can from being put down. Secretary/treasurer Kay Grantham is the public face of the Magnolia chapter and does an outstanding job. The chapter has saved countless animals since its inception in 2008.

Bogalusa Animal Control Officer David Kellis works closely with the organization to try and save as many dogs as he can. Like many people, Kellis is an animal lover and I’m sure it pains him immensely whenever he has to put an animal down.

I think these animal rescue organizations are kind of slick. A common procedure is requesting people to become foster parents of animals while the organization looks for people to adopt them permanently. Of course, after a few days or weeks you’ve become too attached to the animal and you decide to keep it for yourself. That’s sneaky, but effective.

There’s nothing wrong with that procedure. The name of the game for animal rescue leagues is saving animals.

Gail and I fostered two kittens in McComb, Miss., and they soon became members of the family. Maggie is still with us and rarely leaves the yard. She is one of the most loving cats I’ve ever seen. She always wants you to rub her head and will let you know when she thinks it’s time to eat. Ella left one day and didn’t make it back. We’re still holding out hope she returns.

How anyone can harm something as innocent as a kitten or puppy or other small animal is beyond me, but abuse occurs almost daily.

Saturday’s “Clear the Shelter Day” should be something everyone in the city can get behind. I promise you there is an animal there just waiting to have someone to care for it and own.

Randy Hammons is a staff writer for The Daily News. He can be contacted by calling 985-732-2565 or by emailing randy.hammons@bogalusadailynews.com.