Animal shelters at capacity in Central Florida: What you can do to help

Animal shelters across Central Florida have teamed up to plead with the community to adopt homeless animals as shelters face full-capacity during National Adoption Weekend.

Currently, Orange County Animal Services has over 600 animals in its care while Seminole County has 345 pets waiting to be re-homed. Osceola County Animal Services has a capacity of about 140 animals. However, according to Kim Stanton, the director of Osceola County Animal Services, they have been pushed beyond their maximum limit many times this summer.

"It’s been a challenging summer for us, and we fear we’re starting to sound like a broken record, repeating once again that we are near capacity and need community help," said Diane Summers, manager for Orange County Animal Services.

Orange County Animal Services reported that rising house costs in the county are the main contributing factor to why there has been so many homeless animals in shelters.  

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"We know we’re in a tough economic period, we’re seeing animals forced into homelessness daily as a result. For those in a position to help, we implore you to do so; there are multiple avenues to lend support and make an immediate difference in the lives of these animals," said Summers.

National Pet Adoption Weekend starts July 22 and ends July 24.  If you cannot adopt, the shelters are asking for donations and for potential foster homes.

For more information on how to support shelters in your area, please visit the links below.

  • Orange County Animal Services is offering a wide range of ways people can get involved.  Community members can volunteer, adopt and foster animals as well as participate in their sleepover program, where a pet can be taken home for a 14-day trial period to help pets get a break from the shelter.
  • Osceola County Animal Services invites the community to learn more on their website and to call 407-742-8000 for any inquiries.
  • Seminole County Animal Services is located at 232 Eslinger Way, Sanford and people can adopt Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m to 4 p.m with extended hours on Wednesday until 6:30 p.m.
  • Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando currently has 250 animals in their care.  According to a press release, the alliance is usually a safety net, however they are near capacity as well. The alliance's food pantry sees an average of 100 families per month asking for free pet food says the press release.  Adoption, fostering and donations are accepted.