FLORENCE, S.C. (WBTW) — Recently, staff at the Florence Area Humane Society say they have seen an increase in people returning pets to the shelter.

President Jayne Boswell says returning an animal to the shelter can traumatize them twice, as many of the sheltered animals are rescued or brought in from horrific conditions already.

Boswell added that it’s important that when people adopt they do research on the breed they want and what fits their lifestyles.

“Australian Shepherd mix…a healer mix those dogs are breed to have a job and so you know when you get them home they may not want to sit on the sofa with you all day long and watch TV. They want to do something active,” Boswell said.

Staff say for these animals being in different areas also means getting used to new people, sounds, and smells which can also affect their behavior.

“It’s an adjustment time and it’s probably at least 3-6weeks depending on the situation that animal has been in,” Boswell said. “We encourage people to come out and spend a lot of time before they adopt. You know interact with several dogs. Go through the kitten area,” Boswell continued.

Leslie Carey is a volunteer at the humane society. She comes in and interacts with the animals as much as she can and urges people to realize the animals need a good home.

“They’re not like trying on shoes, ladies. They are not accessories. They do look good but they do have feelings and they have needs just like we all do and you need to address that,” Carey said.

Boswell says she understands if a pet isn’t a great fit for the person or family that adopts, but returns also affect their already full capacity.

“We’re always going to make space for animal if we can, but unfortunately there’s a limited amount of cages, limited number if kennels and I don’t think it’s fair for an animal to be put in a crate and that’s all that we have to offer,” Boswell said.

Boswell added she and staff will be participating in a Clear the Shelter Adoption event from August 23rd to September 19th, with 50% off adoptions. The shelter is located at 1434 McCurdy Road in Florence.

For more information on how you can adopt and spend time with an animal before doing so visit http://www.florencehumanesociety.org/ or call (843) 669-2921.