Starting Wednesday, county animal shelters in Martinez and Pinole will be turning away people wanting to surrender pets due to the high volume of animals at the facilities.
Contra Costa County Animal Services is also temporarily closing the night deposit boxes where people can surrender animals during hours when the shelters are closed to the public.
This freeze is expected to last about a month. Exceptions may be made for animals that are injured, unhealthy, under 12 weeks old and as otherwise required by law, CCCASD said. However, the department warned that surrendering an animal should be the last resort.
“High owner surrender rates leads to overpopulation in our shelters, which increases the possibilities that animals will get disease and/or experience behavior problems,” according to CCCASD. “Properly managing shelter inventory and the health of the pets in our care improves the chances of finding homes for the animals in our care.”
Families in need can email email@example.com or call (925) 335-8300 to determine if CCCASD can accept their pet.
The department said it is also set to develop an intervention program to convince families to keep their pets. See this Keeping Your Pets in Your Home page for resources.
Despite the freeze, CCCASD will continue to receive and impound animals that are sick, injured, abandoned or detained by law enforcement agencies.
Anyone interested in becoming a foster parent for animals, please call (925) 335-8325.