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Time is running out for pets lost over the holiday weekend

Posted: 7:22 PM, Jul 05, 2016
Updated: 2016-07-05 23:26:29Z

BUTLER COUNTY, Ohio — Time is running out for many of the lost dogs who found their way into local humane societies after being scared away from home by loud parties and fireworks over the holiday weekend.

Some will only be kept for a handful of days until they become property of the animal shelter that found them — and after that, they may be passing into the worst possible situation.

“By law, we have to hold stray dogs that are not wearing a current license for three days, which is a pretty short window,” said Meg Stephenson, executive director of Animal Friends Humane Society in Butler County.

After the three-day period is over, an unlicensed dog becomes property of the shelter, which means that it is evaluated to see whether or not the shelter believes it can be placed with another family. If not, there’s only one other option.

“Not all of the dogs will pass the (adoption) assessment,” Stephenson said. “If they don’t pass the assessment and aren’t able to be placed up for adoption, we will go forward with euthanasia.”

Dogs with a current license are held for 14 days instead of just three, but once that period expires, they head down the same road; the shelter does its best to either find each dog a new family or humanely put it down.

Stephenson said Tuesday that many pets disappeared over the holiday weekend because of loud fireworks and big parties. The Butler County shelter took in close to 30 dogs between Friday and Tuesday.

Six were reunited with their owners, but more than 20 were still waiting for someone to pick them up as Tuesday drew to a close.

“There is a chance, if you came in on day four or five, that your pet could already have been adopted to another household, so check as early as you can, as often as you can,” Stephenson said.