TJO seeing uptick in pet owners seeking help after end of eviction moratorium
SPRINGFIELD, MA (WGGB/WSHM) - Local animal shelters are noticing an uptick in calls from families who need help, with many saying they can no longer keep their pets because they’re losing their home. It comes nearly two months after the COVID-19 eviction moratorium expired on March 31.
“We want people to call us when they’re troubled. The soonest they can reach out for help, the better,” said Lori Swanson, executive director of the Thomas J. O’Connor Animal Control and Adoption Center.
Swanson said they’re there to help in any situation, whether that’s a short-term need for supplies or resources or a long-term solution to help re-home a pet. Many times, they can help bridge that gap during transition between housing. The key, she said, is reaching out early.
“We know that keeping families and pets together is what’s most important and what is our focus,” Swanson added.
Since the eviction moratorium expired on March 31, Swanson told us they’ve been getting more calls for people needing help or for animals that have been left behind. She said the issue can impact anyone.
“Housing insecurities are across the board, across our region, across our state,” Swanson explained.
If you have to move because of your pets or are in between places, Swanson told Western Mass News that TJO offers assistance. They have crates, food, and supplies for those in need. Also, if necessary, you can surrender your pet to the shelter to be rehomed, like Benson, who’s looking for a new home after their owner had to move.
If you or anyone you know is facing difficulty or you are concerned an animal may have been abandoned, reach out to animal control for assistance.
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