Posted on: June 15, 2022 Posted by: Petsynse Comments: 0

Several factors have led to the overcrowding of dogs at the Chautauqua County Humane Society. The facility is waiving its adoption fee in an effort to reduce the current population. P-J file photo

A “perfect storm” that includes an uptick in stray dogs arriving at the Chautauqua County Humane Society combined with animals staying at the facility longer has resulted in overcrowding.

As of Tuesday, the local Humane Society had at least 40 dogs of which 31 were currently available for adoption.

Brian Papalia, senior programs director for the 2825 Strunk Road facility near Jamestown, said the current occupancy puts them “at least 10 above our max capacity.”

Not long after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic is when adoptions began to decline, Papalia said. He added that strays and dogs tied to court cases also have resulted in the kennels being filled longer than usual.

“This is a crisis, and we are in desperate need to have the community step up and help give these dogs homes,” the Humane Society added in a news release. “This is not a situation that is unique to our shelter as shelters all over the United States are dealing with similar situations.”

In an effort to reduce its dog population, the Humane Society is waiving its adoption fee until the level becomes “manageable.”

“We are waiving the fee, but all other steps of the adoption process will remain firmly in place,” Papalia said. “We encourage adopters to fill out an online adoption application at Meets and dog meets will be necessary. We are working to make matches that will be happy, healthy, and last a lifetime. We also welcome donations in lieu of the adoption fee.”

Shelter hours at the Humane Society are 1-5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays. For more information, visit

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