Give candy, not kittensPublished 11:42am Wednesday, March 27, 2013
Shelter director: Fill Easter baskets with chocolate, jelly beans
Easter is on its way, but the Lake Martin Animal Shelter is encouraging people to avoid one popular gift when filling those baskets – new pets.
“Animals are never gifts,” said shelter director Mia Chandler.
Although the Lake Martin Animal Shelter does not have bunnies or chicks – two popular Easter pets – Chandler said they do see an influx people wanting to adopt Easter presents.
“I get many requests for kittens for Easter,” Chandler said. “Kittens, rabbits and chicks are not Easter basket tokens. They are animals that require medical attention, a lifetime commitment and a great deal of maintenance.”
Chandler said she makes sure people understand the commitment before adopting a pet at Easter as a gift. If people aren’t ready for the long-term commitment, “chocolate, jelly beans and those things are a much better option,” Chandler said.
Chandler said although the shelter will see large numbers of puppies and kittens this time of year with adult animals being in heat, she still abides by conscientious adoption rules and encourages those giving pets away “free to a good home” to be cautious about to whom they give those animals.
“There are people that do not deserve pets that have access to pets,” Chandler said. “Shelters and rescues and animal clinics have the ability to screen. The general public – they’re limited in what information they are able to receive.”
Adoption restrictions, Chandler said, include not adopting young pets to young children as well as not allowing people to adopt cats if they plan to have them live outdoors, with some exceptions.
But Chandler said if people meet requirements and fulfill the adoption process, Easter can be a great time of year for someone to add a pet to their family – just like any other time of year.
“I’ve had plenty of successful Easter adoptions,” Chandler said. “As far as I’m concerned, every day should be an adoption day. You don’t need a holiday to condone an adoption.”