Humane Society of Johnson County pleads for help amid closing fears

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A central Indiana group that provides animal adoptions and helps low-income pet owners is running short of money and volunteers, and organizers say it may be forced to close.

The Daily Journal reports several board members have retired recently from the Humane Society of Johnson County, and the list of volunteers and foster homes for dogs has dwindled. Humane Society president Janet Gorrell said lagging donations and rising costs for pet food, cleaning supplies and utilities are compounding the situation.

The Humane Society operates on about $150,000 a year. It uses the money to provide a low-cost spay-neuter program, a pet food pantry and assistance with veterinary bills. It also operates a feral cat control program and offers some adoptions.

"We offer a lot to the community, and we need to get more people involved and get more people helping out. If things continue on the path that they're on and if we don't grow, that is true, we could have to close down by May," Gorrell said.

Gorrell said that unlike the county-run animal shelter, the Humane Society relies on grants and donations.

Animal control director Michael Delp said the Humane Society has helped pull animals into foster care when the shelter is overcrowded. The feral cat program has significantly reduced the number of cats being euthanized, he said.

"The feral cat program has been huge, and they've been just a driving force in a sense of keeping this going," Delp said.

Gorrell said the Humane Society needs more donations, new volunteers and new board members. It's also seeking a contractor who can install a new septic system at its office and shelter in Franklin at a reduced cost.

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