Animal rescue group stepping up

Tuesday, July 5, 2011 - 6:19pm

HAMMOND, La (FOX44) -- Earlier this year, the Tangi Humane Society was running out of room.

"It was either a do or die situation," says founder Randy Stegall. "We were going to be able to get us our own place or were going to have to make some major cutbacks."

Luckily, those cutbacks never had to happen. A charitable supporter of the organization donated enough money to buy a new facility in Hammond. Stegall says the donation was a blessing, not just for his organization, but for the parishes it helps.

Tangi Humane Society rescues homeless and abused pets in both Livingston and Tangipahoa parishes. Tangipahoa parish has an animal control facility. Livingston does not.

Instead, Livingston's cities have animal control facilities. However, once outside the city limits, there's little that can be done for a stray pet or an abuse case. The volunteers in Tangi Humane Society do their part to help in those particular areas.

"The need is so large that not only us can take care of it," says Stegall. "Even us and Tangipahoa Animal Control, it's still really overwhelming for both of us to take care of that volume."

However, the new space should help. Stegall says they bought a house in Hammond quickly, and started building a kennel right next to it. When it's finished, it will be a 140 square foot shelter area that can house about 50 dogs and 25 cats at maximum. Stegall says that's more animals than they could fit at their old shelter, the house of one of the volunteers.

Stegall says he's excited about the move to the new facility, but it's still too small to handle the large number of cats and dogs out in the community that need help.

"There's a whole bunch that we can't do. There are hundreds of dogs that run loose and cats that are diseased because they're not taken care of by their owners," he explains. "The population is way too high. There are a bunch of reasons why Livingston needs animal control."

Right now, Stegall says he and his volunteers will continue to do what they can to protect the animals, the ones that can't protect themselves.

Stegall says he expects to start moving into the new facility as early as next week. Learn more about the organization at http://www.tangihumanesociety.org/

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