COLUMBUS, Ga. – It is summer and it’s the season for moving and sadly it’s also the time of the year when dogs get left behind.
Local animal shelters, bust at the seams this time of the year, with more dogs than space. Space is so limited at the Columbus Animal Care & Control Center in Columbus they just had to euthanize their first dog in a while. Becky Carter with Animal SOS (Animal Services and Operations Support) says the killing happened on Wednesday and it was the first time since the middle of February. Hearing news like this breaks the heart of animal lover Shelby Alavekios. She is a military spouse and as as soon as she found out her husband was being stationed in Hawaii she began to do everything she could to bring her two dogs with them.
She spent upwards of $2,000 and countless hours researching, filling out paper work and taking the animals to various vet appointments just to get them approved for the trip. She also joined four different Facebook groups to assist her with the big task of moving animals to the island state. It was on these social media groups she discovered not everyone is as willing to jump through the hoops in order to bring their dogs. Instead Alavekios says every day there is someone new that puts a post on the groups looking to dump their dogs. This does not surprise Becky Carter with Animal SOS. However, she says she is thankful for responsible pet owners like Alavekios. Carter says it’s rare she gets to hear success stories like this.
Carter’s advice for any families not bringing animals on their move is to start the process of “finding a new home” immediately. Also, she says you can reach out to Animal SOS or the Pet Coalition. With enough time Carter says they can help place your animal in a new home or a foster situation.
There also a three helpful websites specifically geared toward helping military families: