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Shelters continue to seek families for homeless animals

By: Andy Kozlowski | Madison - Park News | Published July 1, 2020

 Hope, a 3-year-old boxer mix, is one of the animals available for adoption at the Madison Heights Animal Shelter. She is shy and needs to be with someone patient.

Hope, a 3-year-old boxer mix, is one of the animals available for adoption at the Madison Heights Animal Shelter. She is shy and needs to be with someone patient.

Photo provided by Justin Holland

 Mourna is a 10-year-old cat at the Madison Heights shelter. She is said to be very affectionate.

Mourna is a 10-year-old cat at the Madison Heights shelter. She is said to be very affectionate.

Photo provided by Justin Holland

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MADISON HEIGHTS/HAZEL PARK — These are turbulent times, and different people cope in different ways. For some, this has meant adding a furry new friend to the family.

The animal shelters in Madison Heights and Hazel Park have been trying to meet this need, diligently looking after the animals in their care and looking for the right homes.

One such dog is Hope, a shy 3-year-old boxer mix with heart-melting eyes, currently living at the Madison Heights Animal Shelter, next to the Department of Public Services at 801 Ajax Drive.

“She was brought in almost a year and a half ago,” said Justin Holland, the animal control officer for Madison Heights. “We believe that she has had very little human interaction, and she will require someone who is very patient.”

At press time, the Madison Heights shelter also had a cat, Mourna, who is about 10 years old.

“She’s a sweet lap cat,” Holland said.

He noted that adoptions have increased lately. He said it might be because people have been sheltering in place for so long, and they want a companion to keep them occupied.

“It’s actually kind of hard to keep a dog for any period of time, and that’s great,” Holland said.

The lineup of homeless animals is ever-changing, as dogs and cats find homes, and new ones arrive to take their place. Those interested in adopting can arrange an appointment to visit the shelter, which is otherwise closed to the public due to COVID-19. Appointments are between 7 and 10 a.m., Monday through Sundays, except for Saturdays. To schedule an appointment, call (248) 837-2784.

At the Hazel Park Animal Shelter, located at 24211 Couzens Avenue inside the Department of Public Services yard, there were two dogs, four cats and 11 kittens in need of homes at press time.

One of the dogs is Kasper, a 5-year-old male golden retriever.

“He is very sweet when you get to know him, but he has some trust issues with strangers,” said Jennifer Thomas, the animal control officer for Hazel Park. “Due to this, several meet and greets may be necessary. He needs to be in a calm home with no children or older children only. But he is an awesome dog when you get to know him.”

One of the cats is Raina, a 10-month-old female domestic shorthair. She is described as a brown-and-black tabby, with patches of white fur.

“She is a kitty who loves to be petted,” Thomas said. “Raina came into the shelter with two kittens. Her two kittens have been adopted, and now it’s Raina’s turn!”

The Hazel Park shelter is open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. While the shelter was open by appointment only during the early days of the pandemic, normal walk-in hours had resumed as of press time. However, those visiting the shelter are required to wear a facial mask.

Both the shelters in Madison Heights and Hazel Park are always in need of supplies, and donations are appreciated. Both shelters could use cleaning supplies such as paper towel, bleach and laundry detergent, as well as non-clumping kitty litter, pet food, heart-worm preventative chews and treats.

“Our main focus at the shelter always has to be the animals,” Thomas said. “During the pandemic we had to find new ways to keep their welfare top priority. We were able to make adjustments for some things, but the closure of the veterinary clinics has had the biggest impact on our animals here in Hazel Park. This has resulted in the explosion of kittens this spring and summer.

“Our most pressing needs due to this issue are kitten supplies,” she said. “Space is always the biggest need for a small shelter like us, but we are also in need of Purina kitten chow, canned Fancy Feast kitten food and non-clumping litter.”

Monetary donations are especially helpful since the shelters can then purchase needed items.

To donate to the Madison Heights shelter, call (248) 837-2784 to arrange a time to donate items in person. Checks can also be mailed to 280 W. 13 Mile Road, with “Animal Shelter” on the memo line, or online through the city website, madison-heights.org, at the bottom where the “Online Payments” option is listed. Cash donations are also accepted.

To arrange donations to the Hazel Park shelter, call (248) 546-4096.

“I would like to thank our community for all the donations and assistance they have offered us in our times of need,” Thomas said. “It really does take a village!”

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