PEORIA (HOI) -- In 2021 the Peoria Humane Society has seen a significant decrease of animals in their shelter. Education coordinator, Kitty Yanko, said the pandemic helped, but now their mission is to make sure animals stay in their homes.
“We don't want to see them come into the shelter. We don't want to see animals running loose, we want to see them at home and loved and cared for," said Yanko.
The shelter is helping people who can't afford to feed their animals so they do not have to give them up.
“So when people are struggling, so are their pets," said Yanko.
Yanko said animals have been the light for many people in a difficult year. And when things in the country seem divided, she says people can rest knowing animals are there for them.
“There's something about animals that unites people, when we talk about a defenseless, you know, dog, or cat or puppy, kitten, whatever, people can't help it want to join together and just make it right," said Yanko.
It's thanks to the pandemic, Yanko said, it's obvious people are home more during this time.
“I think the nice thing that came from that is the attachment between the owner and the pet has really grown people are appreciating their pets more," said Yanko.
If someone can't care for their animal, Yanko said people should not feel shameful.
"I think it's a no judgment thing, we really as a society have recognized that sometimes you fall on hard times, sometimes you can't do everything that you want to for your family, that includes humans and animals," said Yanko.
The Humane Society is in contant need of cat and dog food and cat Litter. Yanko said any donation makes a difference and can be dropped off at the facility.
For more information and other drop off locations, visit the Peoria Humane Society website.