LAKELAND, Fla. -
A small white trailer pulls up to the SPCA shelter in Lakeland early Saturday afternoon. Inside, 82 crates needing to be assembled.
Those crates will serve as temporary homes for stray dogs out of Hillsborough County. They will be housed inside a 6,000-square-foot tent set up next door to the SPCA in Lakeland.
"The goal will be to place these animals up for adoption and hopefully the community will help us with that.," Adam Lamb said. He is the Director of Animal Care for SPCA Florida.
Last week the Hillsborough County Animal Shelter was hit with an outbreak of two viruses known to cause upper-respiratory in dogs. That prompted the shelter to stop taking in and adopting out stray dogs.
"The virus that we have is somewhat common upper respiratory virus. However this particular one sheds in large numbers for a long number of days and so once it comes into your shelter, it takes more effort than other virus to get out of the shelter." Ian Hallett, Director of Animal Services for Hillsborough County said.
After hearing about the shelter's problems the SPCA teamed up with Talk-Fusion, a local business in Brandon. That's how the tent and crates came about for the emergency shelter.
The temporary shelter will allow Animal Control to continue taking in stray dogs while they work to get their shelter back to normal. "Their supporters, their volunteers who are going to come out and walk our animals and provide them a nice, safe, clean environment," Ian said.
The emergency shelter will stay standing for about two weeks until the Hillsborough County Animal shelter gets the all clear. After that time any animal that hasn't been adopted will then be taken back to Hillsborough County.
The crates were all assembled by the end of the day Saturday and dogs will begin staying in them starting on Sunday.