It's always sad to see animals alone, waiting for homes at local animal shelters. It's especially sad when those pets were found or brought in as strays, not knowing what's happening, where their family is and if they will ever get home...but that's what a growing number of dogs in Jackson are wondering after this past weekend.

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An Influx of Stray Dogs at Jackson County Animal Shelter (JCAS)

Over the course of the last weekend of February 2022, Jackson County Animal Shelter took in eight stray dogs (including puppies) that, according to WILX, we are either untagged or un-microchipped but also had little to no signs of anyone looking for them.

This kind of heartbreaking situation is hard enough to think about when you consider the family that is looking for them but is made even worse when you consider the alternative, that nobody is looking to get them back.

What makes it all even harder than that, JCAS Director Lydia Sattler tells WILX, is that the shelter only has enough space for 13 stray dogs and with the eight that came in over the weekend, they were overcrowded at 15.

On the JCAS Facebook Page, a video was shared asking if anyone knows of some missing pups, to contact them:

What Will Happen to Stray Dogs at JCAS?

There are multiple scenarios that can play out when a stray dog has to spend some time at the shelter.

One, which is most ideal, would be that the owners have been searching for their scared, stressed pet and are able to return them home.

"You know we see dogs that mourn for their people," Sattler told WILX. "They don’t want to be held in single kennels alone. It’s a difficult environment so we’d love to see them get out of here go back home."

The other, though, happens after four days and that is, per WILX, the time frame in which an animal can stay at the shelter as a stray before it is "prepped" for adoption from Jackson County Animal Shelter. This includes getting them tested, any vaccines they may need, spay/neuter and getting microchipped.

A Lesson on the Importance of Being a Responsible Dog Owner

Sometimes, things happen and your dog gets out, gets away from you, etc. It doesn't make you a bad first.

However, as reported by WILX, JCAS says that you can not only be ticketed for letting a dog "run astray" but if it's a repeated occurrence, it carries a misdemeanor charge.

Per Michigan Legislature, section 287.262 "Dogs; licensing, tags, leashes":

"It shall be unlawful...for any owner to allow any dog, except working dogs such as leader dogs, guard dogs, farm dogs, hunting dogs, and other such dogs, when accompanied by their owner or his authorized agent, while actively engaged in activities for which such dogs are trained, to stray unless held properly in leash."

The shelter also reiterates this is a lesson on the importance of microchipping or tagging your dogs. In the event your pup goes astray, is found, and/or is brought in to a shelter, you will be able to find them a lot quicker.

At the end of the day, it's all about being a good owner, being ready for the responsibility of owning a dog and familiarizing yourself with best practices, like leash laws and microchipping.

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