KILLEEN, TX — The Killeen Animal Shelter is located off of Commerce Drive, but the second you pull into the parking lot, the noise of traffic is drowned out by the barks and meows coming from the facility.
That’s because the shelter is overloaded with furry friends.
“Unfortunately, there's only so much space that we can give the animals that come in off the street,” Jessica Dunagan, the animal services manager explained.
In fact, if you’re one of the lucky ones in the pound, you have a cage of your own, but with the influx of animals, each cage is divided into two, creating a space for two separate animals.
“If we reach that capacity to where we have to double up or triple up on cages, and that's what we have to do,” Dunagan said. “We try to keep that to a minimum so that we can not spread those extra diseases that might come in with those animals.”
That capacity was reached, a while ago.
The shelter has room for about 160 animals, both cats and dogs, but right now it has well over 200, with more coming in by the day.
“We do get adoptions, on the free adoption weekends probably roughly 20 to 27, maybe 30,” Dunagan began. “Unfortunately, we do take in almost that same amount that same weekend.”
The constant flow creates a less than ideal situation, both mentally and physically, for the animals.
“They look all sad,” Sara Jo Cain, a frequent adopter said. “You can't do anything about it because they are in a cage, and then you take them out, do the meet and greet, and then boom, their full potential.”
Sara Jo Cain has adopted multiple dogs and cats from the Killeen Shelter and has seen the impact being in the shelter can have on a pet.
“I have Aries, Sage, Logon and Zero, and they're all cuddle bugs,” she said, smiling. “I got their full potential.”
While donations and foster homes are always welcomed and encouraged, Dunagan said the biggest help would be for volunteers to come to the shelter and socialize with the animals to keep them busy while getting them ready for adoption.
If you’re interested in lending a helping hand, just head over to its website.