The official student newspaper of GWUOHS

GW Chronicle of the Yawp

The official student newspaper of GWUOHS

GW Chronicle of the Yawp

The official student newspaper of GWUOHS

GW Chronicle of the Yawp

Give Em’ The Ol’ Razzle Dazzle

Support Your Local Humane Society Today

McKamey Animal Shelter is a non-profit animal shelter located in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Although they do not label themselves as a “no-kill shelter,” they are committed to “never euthanizing [an animal] simply for reasons of space or time.” McKamey is also a “fear-free shelter” meaning that all staff receive training in how they can make the shelter as stress free and fear free for the animals as possible.

Despite all this information being available on their website, Lauren Mann, Director of Advancement at McKamey, says if she could change anything about McKamey, it would be the way people perceive it. She says, “there are so many misconceptions – people view us a sad place, a prison, etc. While there is a lot of ‘sad’ things that happen, there is a ton of good and positivity.”

While McKamey has a humane capacity of 200 dogs and 60-100 cats/kittens, they never turn animals away. This is despite the fact that they currently care for more animals than their limit allows for. You might ask how can a humane society take in more animals than their humane capacity allows and still remain a safe and healthy place for these animals. The answer to this is fostering.

While the humane capacity refers to how many animals the shelter can support in their physical building, they can support more animals in foster homes.

When someone brings a stray animal in to the shelter, McKamey staff will sometimes ask that the person who brought that animal in to hold on to it for a brief period of time until they can find a safe place for it. Even then, McKamey provides that person with support and resources to take care of the animal until they can rehouse it.

While the humane limit has already been exceeded now, things are going to get more crowded before the settle down. According to Mann, summer is the busiest time of year for the shelter, with the number one month for adoptions being July. But they also see, “an influx of animals come in during the Spring when kitten season begins.”

Kitten season – the time when most cats give birth – is universal, so if you’re looking to help out this spring, consider adopting or fostering some kittens starting in March! And make sure to keep an eye out as you’re driving around. Kittens do not always know to be afraid of vehicles and they can be small enough that you don’t see them until it’s too late.

Even as we begin moving away from the holiday season, people always talk about not giving pets as gifts. However, McKamey encourages it, but they ensure that people do it safely. They encourage pets to be whole family decisions – not a surprise gift – with the entire family being “present during adoption to ensure a good fit.” They also hold space in their facility for that animal for thirty days in case the pet did not fit into the home like the owners had hoped. That way, the animal has a safe place to return to just in case.

Make sure to support your local humane society this coming year as they take care of the hundreds of pets living without a loving home.

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About the Contributor
Grey H, Journalist
Grey is a senior at GWUOHS and lives in north Georgia. They are passionate about human rights and social justice which will be their primary focus in college next year. While at GWUOHS, Grey has been actively involved in leading several clubs including the writing lab and involved as part of the leadership team for several others including Book Club, Performing Arts Club, and LGBTQ+ & Allies Club. Outside of GWUOHS, they are an avid actor and director, directing and performing in shows at their local high school and community theater.
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