Meet Central Florida’s Longest-residency Cats and Dogs

Approximately 6.3 million pets are housed in animal shelters across the country each year, according to the ASPCA, of which 3.1 million are dogs and 3.2 million are cats.

Saturday is National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day, which raises awareness about the millions of shelter pets waiting for a family. Central Florida county shelters were asked to report on their longest-staying residents. These dogs and cats are looking for new homes.

Brevard County Sheriff’s Office Animal Services

Shelters in Brevard County are run by the sheriff’s office. The sheriff’s office did not provide a name of a longtime resident, but they provided some information.

  • Shelter animals currently number 216
  • They saved 5,477 animals in 2021
  • The county needs fosters and volunteers.
  • Adoption at the shelter is currently free and includes spaying/neutering, microchipping, vaccinations, a county license tag, and free medical insurance through Trupanion with every approved application.

Flagler Humane Society

Dougie and Maru from Flagler Humane Society.

Get to know Dougie and Maru…

‘Dougie’ has been at Flagler Humane Society since October 2021. He is a mix of a terrier, pit bull, and mastiff. His age is almost three years old.

It has been two months since Maru, a two-year-old female shorthair cat, arrived at Flagler Humane.

Flagler Humane Society in Palm Coast has at least three times this year been at capacity with 339 animals at its shelter.

Any animal that has been at the shelter for at least 90 days is eligible for a free adoption on National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day.

Most of the shelter’s needs are adoptions and donations. You can adopt a pet by visiting the Flagler Humane Society website.

Lake County Animal Services

Wilbur is Lake County Animal Shelter's longest resident.

Wilbur is Lake County Animal Shelter’s longest resident. (Lake County Animal Services)

The Lake County Animal Shelter has been caring for Wilbur for more than 500 days. Last month, he was set for adoption, but it didn’t happen. Wilbur is a 6-year-old American bulldog mix who was hit by a car and arrived at the shelter with a number of injuries. Despite his recovery, officials at the shelter say he perpetually tilts his head.

Currently, there are 150 dogs, 75 cats, and two goats looking for homes at the shelter. More dogs are available than usual.

Foster families are needed to help with kitten season, and volunteers to give extra time to the animals at this no-kill shelter. They are also in need of adopters.

Adoption fees are waived on Friday through Sunday.

If you are interested in adopting an animal, volunteering, or fostering one, head over to the Lake County Animal Shelter.

Marion County Animal Services

Pancho has been at Marion County Animal Services more than 400 days.

Pancho has been at Marion County Animal Services for more than 400 days. (Marion County Animal Services)

More than 400 days have passed since Pancho joined Marion County Animal Services. It is estimated that the mixed-breed dog is about 5 years old.

Pancho is one of 172 dogs and 77 cats at the shelter. Several times already in the year, officials have reached capacity.

“We would love people to consider adopting a pet for its personality and not for looks. Many people have a vision of the pet that they want, so they walk past pets (especially dogs) who are much better suited for their lifestyle and energy level,” expressed Roger Waddell, spokesperson for Marion County Animal Services.

“Adoption is not only about rescuing an animal from homelessness, but it’s about happiness for the pet and the family. Our staff knows the pets, so if an adopter is willing to rely on us to make suggestions, there is an increased chance for long-term success.”

Waddell says adoption fees at Marion County Animal Services have been temporarily waived.

If you’re interested in adopting, visit the Marion County Animal Services website to see adoptable pets.

You can donate if you can’t adopt through the shelter’s Amazon wishlists.

Orange County Animal Services

Gambit is currently Orange County Animal Services longest resident.

Gambit is currently Orange County Animal Services’ longest resident. (Orange County Animal Services)

91 days have passed since Gambit was at Orange County Animal Services. Unfortunately, he had to return to the shelter. The dog became a stray, was adopted by a family, then given to a new family that lost their home. It’s okay for him to live with other dogs, as long as they aren’t too jumpy.

Due to hoarding cases, confiscations of animals for cruelty, and animal surrenders, there are currently 221 residents in the shelter.

According to shelter officials, volunteers and foster homes are needed to help animals decompress and spend time away from the shelter.

According to the website, there is a $20 adoption fee for all pets in April. Vets and first responders are exempt from the adoption fee. As part of the “Stranger Things” celebration, they will be offering an $11 adoption promo starting in May.

You can try a pet for two weeks in your own home through the shelter’s new sleepover program.

Visit the Orange County Animal Services website for information on adoptable pets as well as volunteer and foster opportunities.

Osceola County Animal Services

Jagger is a high-energy dog at Osceola County Animal Services.

Jagger is a high-energy dog at Osceola County Animal Services. (Osceola County Animal Services)

Osceola County Animal Services has had Jagger as a resident for the longest period of time. The 2-year-old dog is a high-energy mixed breed that prefers to fetch to cuddle. You will need to be an active owner and any other pets at home must be capable of handling his energy. An older family with children would be ideal.

At Osceola County Animal Services, Jagger is one of 50 dogs. A rabbit, four horses, and 52 cats are also part of their household. On one occasion, they were nearly overcrowded.

The shelter is also looking for foster parents and volunteers as kitten season approaches. The shelter can also use financial donations for veterinary expenses.

The cost to adopt a longtime pet is only $10. First responders and military personnel are eligible for a discount on adoption fees. Adoption fees for senior pets are half off for seniors over 55 years old.

Those interested in adopting, fostering, volunteering, or donating should go to the Osceola County Animal Services website.

Seminole County Animal Services

Aries and Athena are the longest residents at Seminole County Animal Services.

Aries and Athena are the longest residents at Seminole County Animal Services. (Seminole County Animal Services)

In Seminole County Animal Services, Arias and Athena have lived for a long time. In June of 2021, Aries was brought to the shelter by the humane society. The shelter has had Athena since March of this year.

The shelter has 166 animals and 75 are in foster care. Volunteers, fosters, and donations are needed to help the shelter’s residents, especially as kitten season is underway.

Seminole County’s animal shelter is offering $20 dog adoptions and $10 cat adoptions on National Adopt a Shelter Pet Day. Adoptions include spaying or neutering, microchipping, and vaccinations.

For information on adoptable pets, volunteering, fostering or donating supplies, go to the Seminole County Animal Services website.

Sumter County Animal Services

Noah has been at Sumter County Animal Services for over a year.

Noah has been at Sumter County Animal Services for over a year. (Sumter County Animal Services)

Noah may have been a resident of the shelter for the longest in Central Florida. Sumter County Animal Services has had this 2-year-old American Staffordshire since March of 2021. Noah prefers to live in a household with just him.

Noah is one of the 80 dogs living at the shelter, which also houses 19 cats. Throughout the year there have been no cancellations.

For more information about Noah and other adoptable pets at the shelter, visit the Sumter County Animal Services website.

Halifax Humane Society (Volusia County)

Spike and Ruffles are two longtime residents at Halifax Humane Society.

Spike and Ruffles are two longtime residents at Halifax Humane Society. (Halifax Humane Society)

Ruffles and Spike have lived at Halifax Humane Society for the longest. As a foster dog, Spike is learning how to walk on a leash and interact with other dogs. He has been with the shelter for more than 160 days. Ruffles, who is 7 years old, was found as a stray. Shelter officials say Ruffles is very shy and pushes people away when he tries to interact with them. He has been with them for over 70 days.

Local governments contract with Halifax Humane, and officials report that even when they run promotions to clear kennels, animals are still coming in stray, lost, abandoned, and seized. Currently, the shelter has 232 animals in its care and 107 are in foster care.

Fosters and volunteers are needed at the shelter to help with the animals and help with community events.

As of now, the shelter is offering 50% off all dog adoptions until the end of April, and we will have another promotion in May.

If you are interested in adopting, fostering, or volunteering with Halifax Humane Society, visit the Halifax Humane Society website.


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