‘Great Depression' Afflicts Shelter Dogs

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This week, we would like to focus on shelter depression, otherwise known as "Shelter Shock" or "Kennel Stress."

When a pet is brought in to the shelter, the entire world of that animal begins to disintegrate into confusion, sadness and anxiety. The unfamiliar sounds, sights, smells and people cause the animals to basically "shut down," as it is just too overwhelming.

The first two to three days are the worst. Symptoms such as quivering, yelping and whining are all too common. Sadly, some animals can be found curled up in a corner looking for hope in each passing shadow.

As you can well imagine, this can, and does cause much mental anguish. Some are depressed and withdrawn while others become hyperactive. A lot happens to an animal within this period of time. Often we witness the inability to eat or even sleep. And these are but a few of the symptoms suffered by these confused and possibly abandoned animals.

Emotional stress, fear and anxiety linger in the air. Some animals go beyond simple stress and turn the corner into what is called "Kennel Crazy," showing signs of aggression toward other dogs, pacing from boredom or gnawing on their kennels. Horrifically, some older dogs are unable to recover from this initial period, as it is just too stressful on them.

Pups and kittens, not yet used to the comforts of a loving home, are not as affected. Older, previously pampered pets deteriorate more quickly. Within this first 72 hours, we expect people to re-claim their pets. Unfortunately, most are not, and become victims of the homeless animal world. All preventable, if she could she have stayed with her owners from the start.

Sometimes a break from the shelter environment can stop the progression of kennel stress, at least temporarily, and buy an animal more time for the possibility of a quicker adoption. This is when foster homes are in such great demand but, unfortunately, are in such low supply.

After about a week of mental misery, the animal starts to show signs of life. They start to wag their tails or cock their heads as they respond to names we have chosen for them. Treats are given as peace offerings and rewards to help finalize and diminish this miserable stage. For most, life is finally turning, and personalities are starting to show as devastation starts to fade to hope.

The "hope stage" will last from this point forward until adoption day.

Finding a home is now the ultimate Hope! Although slightly apparent from the very beginning, this hopeful feeling is more prominent now than ever. The animals are never without it. Could the next passerby be her next new family? Since Kennel Stress will always be present until the animal is placed in a loving home environment, we can only Hope for the best.

Please consider these lives this week and imagine their unhappiness as they await a miracle that they will be granted another chance. Better yet, imagine this happening to one of your family pets.

Thank you to all of our volunteers for spending precious time with our homeless pets and special thanks goes to Lorrie Ellie of Happy Tails West Grooming for providing free grooming services every week to the shelter animals.

LITTLE BIT

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Hi everyone! I am a fabulous 7-month-old girl who was recently turned over by my owner for chewing on my neighbor’s porch. Boy, was he mad! But I am still young and haven’t had the proper training, so it isn’t my fault.

Hi everyone! I am a fabulous 7-month-old girl who was recently turned over by my owner for chewing on my neighbor's porch. Boy, was he mad! But I am still young and haven't had the proper training, so it isn't my fault. The shelter even offers a free training class to help us start our lives together. I am very sweet, energetic and only want to please you. I walk OK on a leash and am good with other dogs. Isn't there anyone out there who can give me a second chance? Please come forward soon.

REBA

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This very sweet 1-1/2-year-old, well-mannered young lady was turned over to us by her owner and she has become quite sad. She is a medium to large sized girl with short, golden brown fur that will require moderate brushing throughout the seasons to help reduce itchy skin. She is good on a leash, good with other dogs, well-behaved around kids, housebroken and rides well in the car.

This very sweet 1-1/2-year-old, well-mannered young lady was turned over to us by her owner and she has become quite sad. She is a medium to large sized girl with short, golden brown fur that will require moderate brushing throughout the seasons to help reduce itchy skin. She is good on a leash, good with other dogs, well-behaved around kids, housebroken and rides well in the car. She can be a digger when bored, however, providing something as simple as a kong toy filled with treats will deter this behavior. She is sweet, pretty and totally full of life. Please come in to meet her soon so she knows that someone still loves her!

KACIE

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This sweet girl is about 10 months old and was brought to us by some kind citizens who were worried about her roaming around without an owner.

This sweet girl is about 10 months old and was brought to us by some kind citizens who were worried about her roaming around without an owner. The owner never came forward to claim her, so we've placed her up for adoption. She is very sweet, docile and aims to please you. Her big brown eyes clearly show her sweet nature. She does need to attend basic obedience training which we will happily provide -- one free class with our local trainer. Give her a chance, she needs another one soon.

STAR

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Star came to the shelter as a stray. When her owners were called, they decided to turn her over to the shelter. Star is about 10 months old, spayed and current on shots. She has an outgoing, loving and curious personality that keeps her bright and cheery.

Star came to the shelter as a stray.hen her owners were called, they decided to turn her over to the shelter.tar is about 10 months old, spayed and current on shots.he has an outgoing, loving and curious personality that keeps her bright and cheery. She would be best fitted with a family that is active and will care about her through thick and thin. Sticking her in the back yard will not work for her, as she needs and wants to be involved in your life. She is good with other dogs but does need to brush up on her sit/stay manners. Like all of our canine adoptions, we will provide you one free basic obedience class to help you and Star start your lives together. Please hurry and meet her soon!

VICKI

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Turned over to animal control June 20 by a man on Sherwood and Easy Street is this sweet little Border Collie mix about 10 months old. She is well-mannered, energetic, happy and gets along well with other dogs. 

Turned over to animal control June 20 by a man on Sherwood and Easy Street is this sweet little Border Collie mix about 10 months old. She is well-mannered, energetic, happy and gets along well with other dogs.er dark black short coat will require only minimal grooming and brushing throughout the seasons, but her bouncy legs will need lots of fun exercise and play. A secure yard or many walks a day will be in order for this cutie, so bring in your current dog for them to meet on neutral ground and let the fun begin.

TREVOR
Now, meet Trevor. What a darling young man this is and oh, his gorgeous eyes! He was picked up as a stray in Young June 18 and, sadly, like most of our strays, never reclaimed. He is starting to break free from the initial "Shelter Shock" phase and showing us that he is very smart. He knows some basic commands and walks pretty well on the leash. He shows no signs of aggression toward other dogs, but is still a tad shy when it comes to strangers. These breeds are very well known for their brain power and loving temperaments. Like all of our dog adoptions, we will provide one free dog training class to help you start your life with him. Come give him a hug!

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Now, meet Trevor. What a darling young man this is and oh, his gorgeous eyes! He was picked up as a stray in Young June 18 and, sadly, like most of our strays, never reclaimed.

To learn more about these and other adoptable pets, visit the shelter at 812 S. McLane Road, call (928) 474-5590 or on the Web visit aysonHumane Society.com, petfinders.com, ets911 or dogsindanger.com.

PROTECT PETS JULY 4TH

Remember, many pets are terrified of fireworks, so take precautions to protect your pet this holiday. Keep pets indoors during the fireworks display. Close doors and windows, curtains and blinds, and put on music or a fan to muffle the noise. Distract your pet with chew toys or games. Make sure your pet is wearing an ID tag with your phone number in the event it escapes and becomes lost.

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