Animal shelters prepare for increased pet intake as eviction moratorium ends

CONTRA COSTA, Calif. (KRON) – As eviction moratoriums come to an end, some tenants will be forced to decide what to do with their pets.

Some animal shelters are anticipating increased intake over the next few months.

Hoping for the best, but preparing for the worst — That’s how many Bay Area shelters are preparing for the end of the housing moratorium.

“After the 2007 housing crisis, we did see an increase in surrender in many shelters around the country are bracing for that right now with this situation and the eviction moratorium ending,” Karalyn Aropen said.

Steve Burdo with Contra Costa Animal Services says they are already preparing to see higher intakes:

“One of the most common reasons people will surrender their pets to the shelter is due to changes in their living situation. With the eviction moratorium now ending, we are preparing for an increase in surrender requests.”

People with both Contra Costa County Animal Services and East SPCA agree that surrendering your pet should be the last resort.

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“We’re trying to get as much information out as we can about ways that we can help support people keeping their pets,” Aropen said.

Vice president of operations with East Bay SPCA Karalyn Aropen tells me they have programs to help struggling families.

There is a pet food pantry, a free behavioral health line, and a hold program that offers free temporary boarding for people working with a social worker to find housing.

She also suggests reaching out to others for help.

“If people can reach out to their family and friends and see if there is anyone in their life that may be able to provide some assistance in terms of temporary boarding of a pet at their home or helping with some stability,” Aropen said.

Oakland’s eviction moratorium is still in place but Aropen says the East Bay SPCA is prepared to help relieve any overcrowding at partner shelters throughout Northern California.

This will help shelters avoid turning away animals or euthanizing animals.

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