Dorchester Paws over max capacity, dog adopters and fosters needed

Dorchester Paws is busting at the seams when it comes to space for puppies and dogs.
Published: Mar. 3, 2023 at 7:32 PM EST|Updated: Mar. 3, 2023 at 8:26 PM EST
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SUMMERVILLE, S.C. (WCSC) - Dorchester Paws is busting at the seams when it comes to space for puppies and dogs.

The shelter says they are over max capacity.

More than 100 adult dogs and 10 puppies are currently at Dorchester Paws and waiting for their forever home.

The adoption center says they are doing all they can to give adopters everything they may need.

“Every animal is spayed/neutered, vaccinated, and microchipped that comes into our care that goes out into an adopter,” Dorchester Paws Director of Marketing and Development Danielle Zuck said. “They’re also medically cleared to the best of our knowledge and our veterinarian’s knowledge at that time of the animal. We give you pet insurance for 30 days, and we also are now giving a free veterinarian hotline, to call for any questions that you have within the first 30 days as well.”

The lack of adoptions has led to overcrowding, and they have had to adjust to make room for all dogs.

“When we get to the point where we have to put the dog in a ‘pop-up,’ we are in what we call crisis mode,” Dorchester Paws Director of Operations April Howard said. “They are the small, wire crates that you see people use when they go to work during the day or when they go grocery shopping. They’re not meant for long-term housing.”

They say they are seeing an increase in owner surrenders, on top of puppy and kitten season.

“Warmer weather brings puppies and kittens a lot sooner, so here they are,” Zuck said. “We have so many animals that have hit our floor because of animals are just not spayed and neutered in our county as much as we would like them to be.”

If you cannot take on the responsibility of an adopter, Zuck explains there are other ways to help.

“Take a dog on a doggy date, you can go around town, you can do an overnight, as well as just a foster to give an animal a shelter break,” Zuck said. “They say even if you can give an animal a weekend, it will lower their stress level tenfold.”

Dorchester Paws is open at 136 4 Paws Ln in Summerville for adoptions every day from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.