Martinsville, VA - Hurricane Sandy had repercussions in our area for animals at the Martinsville-Henry County SPCA. The shelter is overloaded with puppies since they can't send them to shelters up north like they normally do.
They are about double their capacity for puppies and dogs. The Martinsville-Henry County SPCA is a no-kill shelter, so every dog they take in they will find a place for either here or in another shelter. But they say they have never been this full.
"To say that we are over stuffed is really saying a lot," said Leslie Hervey, executive director of the shelter.
The shelter normally maxes-out at 50 puppies and 18 dogs, but it's now a temporary home to more than a 100 puppies and more than 30 dogs.
"We have the animals, they have got to be cared for," Hervey.
They have gotten to this point because as a no-kill shelter, they take in animals from 11 counties. With the one-two punch of Hurricane Sandy and the Nor'easter, shelters that usually take animals from them, haven't been able to.
"Everybody kind of got caught and we continued to take animals in hoping it was a short term problem but it's turned into a longer term problem than we anticipated," said Hervey.
What is normally the women's restroom here at the shelter has become home to three puppies. They simply do not have enough room in the cages. And with more dogs, comes more staff and more costs.
"We've been in overtime for two weeks now. Almost all of our employees are working every day and they are tired," said Hervey.
"The staff is over worked at the moment, they are doing, one person is doing the job of three," said Nicole Cooke, a facility manager.
But they hope things will turn around soon.
"It's a little disheartening but I am glad they have a place to come here," said Cooke.
The SPCA is asking for help. They need money, dog toys, food, and most importantly fosters and homes for the animals. They expect to be able to send the animals up North at the end of the year.
Learn more about how you can help on the shelter's website.