In addition to 73 cats, dogs, puppies and kittens rounded up during the city’s homeless sweep at Maili Point this week, 18 more animals were taken in by the Oahu Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals since the evictions.
Prior to the sweep, the SPCA had talked to the homeless about the future of their four-legged friends.
"We were at the beach park counseling them in preparation for their move," said SPCA President and co-founder Stephanie Ryan. Residents had either the option of relinquishing their pets to the SPCA or allowing the SPCA to foster them until owners would be able to provide care for them again.
Three dogs have been returned to their owners so far. According to Ryan, the SPCA was asked to find foster homes for 30 of the 91 animals. The rest are being put through a rehabilitation process in preparation for adoption.
"We provide any necessary surgery, microchipping, sterilization, inoculation or behavioral rehabilitation," she said. "Some of the dogs that were mostly chained up are really aggressive."
The SPCA now houses more than 200 animals — nearly double the average amount.
Animals that do not end up getting adopted would join one of the families in the SPCA’s extended foster family network, Ryan said.
"These animals would have been left in the streets, spreading diseases, endangering children, endangering motorists and endangering themselves," Ryan said.
The SPCA offered to take possession of them so the homeless could easily move into transitional housing. Ryan said transitional housing does not allow residents to have companion animals, which she believes is one of the reasons why the Maili Point Beach residents have no permanent shelter.
"They don’t have it in their heart to give up their family members," Ryan said.
The shelter is located in Kalaeloa with a transitional housing facility located nearby, which Ryan said would make it convenient for owners to visit and care for their pets.