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County Humane Society handles pet adoptions

September 14, 2007

The Humane Society of Washington County, at 13011 Maugansville Road in Hagerstown, takes in and picks up stray or lost pets and pets being turned in for adoption.

The Humane Society is open Tuesdays and Thursdays from noon to 7 p.m.; Wednesdays and Fridays from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. It is closed Sundays.

The front desk is open Monday if someone needs to surrender a pet or lost animal. It does not interview for adoptions on Monday. The hours on Monday are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., but it is closed from noon to 1 p.m.

In order to adopt a pet, a person must be 18 years old or older, have a valid identification card and a home phone number. The shelter reserves the right to deny any adoption for any reason, the Web site states.

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The adoption fee for a dog is $100 and the adoption fee for a cat is $75. With the adoption fee, pet owners get a spayed or neutered cat or dog that has been examined by a county veterinarian, had a Revolution flea treatment and a distemper vaccination. Dogs come with an ID tag and a Bordetella vaccination, and cats come with a microchip and a feline leukemia/feline AIDS combo test, according to the Web site.

A database kept at the shelter helps staffers connect owners with lost pets.

If the shelter gets a stray, but cannot find the owner, it will put the animal up for adoption for as long as the shelter can keep it or as long as the animal is happy in its kennel. The shelter will perform euthanasia on some animals in some circumstances, including shelter overcrowding, the Web site states.

The Humane Society shelters about 5,000 animals per year.

Participating Washington County veterinarians accept discount vouchers issued by the shelter to spay or neuter a pet.

Pet lovers can participate in the shelter's Foster Care program. There is an application and interview process involved for those who wish to take in pets that need pre-adoption care.

The Humane Society gives owners of elderly or ill pets the option to have their pets put to sleep in the comfort of their own homes or in the shelter's "Journey's End" room, which is designed to give the pet comfort. A cremation service is offered.

Humane Society animal control officers respond to citizen complaints about barking dogs or loud animals, animal cruelty, leashless animals and abandoned animals.

The Humane Society is in the process of designing a Humane Education Program for Washington County Public Schools, but has information at the shelter on preventative health care, behavioral problems, training, grooming and current issues in the animal welfare field.

Area residents may donate pet food to feed the shelter's animals through the Humane Society's Food Donation Bank program. Excess food is given to rescue groups and families in need.

ยท For more information, call the agency at 301-733-2060. In emergencies, call 301-790-7577.

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