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Cambria County Humane Society Changes

Contracts requiring the humane society to respond to calls of stray animals expired and were not renewed at the end of last year.

The contracts were between several municipalities and the humane society. Before the changes, someone was always on-call to respond to calls of stray animals in those areas.

Anyone on the staff at the humane society could respond to calls of stray animals, and according to humane society officials staffing shortages made it difficult to respond 24/7. They said it also became difficult to take in more animals.

“It was written in our contract that pending space is only when we could bring animals in, so it depended on space, but we would always respond to every single call and try to help them out from there,”

She said the shelter does still take animals in if they have space but said the humane society has been over capacity for about 10 months.

That means animals must be adopted for them to take in new ones.

Officials said 110 animals, 41 being dogs, have been adopted out of the humane society this year.

But now for stray animals instead of contacting the county’s non-emergency number which would reach out to the on-call humane society employee, people should reach out directly to the humane society if they come across stray animals at (814) 535-6116 or visiting its website. Officials with the humane society said they will respond when they are able to.

“We’re still willing to bring in animals, we’re still willing to help the community, we’re still willing to pick up animals if really need be, We can still help with food for the community, we can still scan for a microchip, we can still provide a kennel in need be. It’s more so the call doesn’t come immediately to an on-call person 24/7. It comes to our business line.”

As for cruelty or neglect cases, the humane officer is still working at the shelter and said she will continue being able to investigate those cases.

Johnstown City Manager Ethan Imhoff said he has not seen a large difference over the last couple months those contracts have not been in effect, but sometimes local police will end up having to respond to a stray animal call if the humane society cannot.

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