Lyndhurst Shelter overcapacity, 6 month dog fee waived. or older

LYNDHURST, Va. (WHSV) – Leaders from Staunton, Augusta County and Waynesboro met today to discuss the Shenandoah Valley Animal Services Center (SVASC) for their monthly owners meeting.

One of the topics of discussion was capacity. SVASC said it has 46 dog pens and 104 cat crates. They said they were over capacity on Facebook.

Tim Fitzgerald reported the shelter staff numbers. They said they had 60 dogs in their care, 26 of them in foster families. They have 118 cats, 69 of which are in foster homes.

The shelter reported a savings rate on Wednesday of 96.2%. So far this year, 708 animals have passed through their doors.

Augusta Dog Adoptions president and shelter attorney Amy Hammer said the shelter was in a critical location and they were not alone. Hammer said many shelters across the country are also over capacity.

Many people have adopted pets during the pandemic, and most of them are not looking to adopt more at this time.

“Right now, there just aren’t that many adopters. Also, some people face difficulties due to the economy. They see more abandoned dogs and cats with fewer adoptions,” Hammer said.

In addition to capacity, local leaders also discussed the unsuccessful search for a supervising veterinarian. Many shelters have a veterinarian on staff, but the SVASC has not had one since the beginning of the year.

This means that they cannot store medication on site and veterinary care requires special travel. Augusta County Administrator Tim Fitzgerald said they had put out a request for proposals for vets more than once and had no interest.

“A few personal friends of mine are vets, and they just tell me ‘we’re covered by our private work’. They said, if you have an emergency and you need something and you want medical animal control bring an animal to us, we will do it for you.

Shelter advocates who attended Thursday’s meeting raised concerns about the issue of vets. They wanted to be sure cats and dogs were vaccinated against diseases like parvo. They said that even though state law does not require them, these vaccines are crucial and affect the health of the herd.

Fitzgerald said the shelter is working with a local veterinarian to ensure vaccines stay up to date and take care of any other current health issues.

At SVASC, fees are waived for dogs 6 months or older. To see which pets are available for adoption, visit their website or check them out on Facebook.

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Jennifer R. Strohm