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Shelters run out of stray dogs and cats as coronavirus makes adoptions rocket
Rescue workers in New York City have seen the number of people fostering strays rocket, as millions of New Yorkers are left unemployed or working from home, and in need of some company to help them through the current stay indoors order.
Two rescue organizations – Muddy Paws, and Best Friends Animal Society, reported that their partner shelters have seen applications to foster or adopt increase 10-fold in recent weeks, with many left empty as a result.
Tom Drescher and his wife Becky Nolin, from Washington DC, were among those who rushed to adopt, and are now proud dog parents to a 10 year-old cancer-stricken mix called Goldie.
Drescher said: ‘It occurred to us it would be a good time to adopt a dog because wed have the time and bandwidth to help it settle in.
‘Its been a blast for us so far — weve been thrilled to have her.’
Muddy Paws spokesman Anna Lai told Bloomberg: ‘For the moment we definitely dont have any dogs left to match.
‘Which is a great problem to have.’
And Julie Castle from Best Friends added: ‘Were seeing people show up in droves to foster.’
But while rescue workers are delighted to find so many animals temporary or forever homes, they also worry that their shelters will fill up again soon as some of the three million people newly out of work surrender pets they can no longer afford to keep.
Lisa LaFontaine, boss of the New Jersey and DC-based Humane Rescue Alliance explained: ‘Were doing whatever we can to empty all of our shelter facilities.
‘We dont know whats going to happen when the economic wave starts hitting.’
Over 37,200 people in the State of New York have tested positive for coronavirus – close to half of the 75,000 diagnoses in the entire United States. A total of 385 New Yorkers have died of Covid-19, with the state recording 100 deaths alone in the last 24 hours.