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More than 250 animals dropped off at Baton Rouge shelter in less than a week

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BATON ROUGE – One shelter is experiencing an animal overload. Hundreds of new animals have been dropped off at Companion Animal Alliance in just under a week. This happened right after the staff lowered the price of adoption.

"We're over capacity so we can't do what we need to do for the animals,” said Jillian Sergio, the Executive Director.

Sergio says it was one week ago when she knew she had a big problem.

"We really hit the tipping point where we couldn't function any longer,” said Sergio.

There haven't been enough adoptions for the number of animals the shelter is currently taking in. Some of the medium and larger dogs are having to stay in 'pop-up' kennels placed in the hallway.

Last week, the price to adopt a cat or dog was lowered to just $15 to encourage more adoptions. Sergio says the incentive helped.

"We adopted out over 120 animals in like 5 days, which is amazing."

But the effort was still not enough. The shelter took in 266 animals, more than double the amount they adopted out, from last Wednesday to Tuesday.

"So it's tough and it's frustrating and it's exhausting,” said Sergio.

Sergio says she can only pinpoint the pandemic as to why there are so many more unaccounted for pets.

"In two years people are moving for the first time, they are going on vacation they didn't have a chance to get their animals spayed or neutered because vet clinics were shut down so now we're seeing litters or litters of litters that they had,” said Sergio.

One pup only 19 weeks old in the lobby Thursday came from one of those litters.

"She got dropped off in a box,” said Mitchell Lovell.

Lovell and his girlfriend Emily Shallow are taking the little girl home, naming her Riya.

“We are so excited, she is spoiled already," said Shallow. 

"Our current dog might even be more excited,” added Lovell.

That’s one pup down and hundreds more to go as the staff at Companion Animal Alliance hustle to take care of the crowded kennels.

The $15 promotional adoption fee ends on Thursday.

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