By Alyssa Schnugg
Despite the Oxford Board of Aldermen passing a new law in October that makes it illegal for people to drop off animals at the animal shelter after hours, some have chosen to ignore the new law, according to Gail Brown, president of the board of MS Critterz that runs the shelter on McElroy Drive.
“The week before last we had five animals dumped (at the shelter),” Brown said.
To help get the word out about the new law, the Oxford Police Department and MS Critterz are working together to help raise awareness.
The ordinance makes it illegal for anyone to drop off animals inside the fence at the city dog park located next to the shelter or on the grounds of the shelter while the shelter is closed.
It is also against the law to break open any part of the shelter, including fences and Animal Control vehicles to take or leave an animal.
“It is our goal to inform our community of the proper procedures required by the city of Oxford and to ensure the safe and humane intake of animals to the shelter,” stated a joint press release from OPD and MS Critterz.
MS Critterz now requires proof that someone dropping off an animal lives in Oxford, Lafayette County or on the University of Mississippi campus or one of its residential housing complexes.
The Mississippi Critterz facility has been updated with technology to help locate individuals who leave animals unattended.
Anyone caught dropping off animals when the shelter is closed or inside the fence at the dog park could face misdemeanor criminal charges.
Mississippi Critterz is open 12 to 6 p.m., Tuesday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday. The facility is closed on Sunday and Monday.
If you need assistance after hours and you live in the city, contact OPD at 662-232-2400 or Animal Control at 662-832-7634. If you live in the county, call the Lafayette County Sheriff’s Department at 662-234-6421.
On Tuesday, Brown presented the Board of Aldermen with an animal report for October and November. Since opening, the shelter has only had to euthanize one cat at the discretion of a veterinarian due to untreatable illness.
INTAKE OCTOBER – Total 79
OXFORD CITY LIMITS – CATS 20
LAFAYETTE COUNTY – CATS 13
OXFORD CITY LIMITS – DOGS 14
LAFAYETTE COUNTY – DOGS 32
ADOPTIONS – OCTOBER 2
TRANSPORTED – OCTOBER 14
RETURN TO OWNER – OCTOBER 4
PASSED AWAY – kittens 4 (treated at vet; unsuccessful)
EUTHANASIA – OCTOBER 1 – Cat – unhealthy and untreatable
INTAKE NOVEMBER – Total 73
OXFORD CITY LIMITS – CATS 13
LAFAYETTE COUNTY – CATS 2
OXFORD CITY LIMITS – DOGS 30
LAFAYETTE COUNTY – DOGS 26
OXFORD CITY LIMITS – LIZARD 1
LAFAYETTE COUNTY – RABBIT 1
ADOPTIONS – NOVEMBER 19
TRANSPORTED – NOVEMBER 0
RETURN TO OWNER – NOVEMBER 5
ESCAPED FROM FOSTER – Dog 1
TNR – Release 2
EUTHANASIA – NOVEMBER 0
Currently Available for Adoption: 60
On Hold (too young for adoption, waiting the mandator five days, etc.): 30
Pending Adoption: 5