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El Paso Humane Society offers help for pet owners dealing with shelter pet stress and anxiety

Adopting an animal should be a joyous occasion for both the person and the pet. However, some newly adopted shelter pets can experience fear, anxiety, or aggression when introduced to their new homes.

“These guys they come in and they may be trembling they’re scared theres a lot of new surrounding, they’re in a very foreign place,” said Melissa Apodaca, Animal Care Lead Associate for the El Paso Humane Society.

Apodaca has been with the Humane Society for 4 years and understands the stress that a dog can go through.

“Here at the shelter the stress level is very high for these poor babies. Some of them adapt quickly to the shelter other ones have a little difficult time to adjust,” said Apodaca.

Volunteers are very useful when it comes to helping the animals adjust to the shelter environment.

This past 4th of July the Humane Society held an event where people from the commuity spent their free time just sitting and reading books to the dogs to help them with their anxiety.

“Reading, sitting down with them in their kennels and just giving them a little loving goes a long way,” said Apodaca.

Signs that a pet is dealing with anxiety at home include them hiding under furniture or trying to escape out of their backyard if they’re left alone undattended.

Apodaca recommends staying away from vets and groomers for at least the first few months because those are also very stressful environments, but she says that being patient can go a long way.

“It’s gonna take them some time for the pets to understand that ‘hey this is my family. I’m being fed here and I’m getting lots of love!”

You can help change the lives of dozens of animals at the Humane Society by taking part in our “Be a Star – Save a Life” Telethon.

It’s happening this Saturday, August 3rd on ABC-7 beginning at 4 p.m. until 11 p.m.

KVIA ABC-7

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