More than once in recent months, Paula O’Neal has found herself stranded on the side of the road with several cats and dogs.
O’Neal, volunteer coordinator for the Humane Society of St. Lucie County, is in charge of the organization’s Mobile Pet Adoption RV. She regularly travels to different sites in the area — local pet stores, churches, schools and community events such as festivals — with volunteers and adoptable dogs and cats. The vehicle currently in use was donated 10 years ago and is approaching 100,000 miles.
“It wasn’t new when it was given to us,” O’Neal said. “We just keep putting money into it. It’s so unsafe and it’s so old.”
The vehicle is used every weekend and several times during the week. O’Neal said that now, every time she heads out in the vehicle, “it’s touch-and-go, especially in the summer, with that little generator trying to keep the air conditioning going.”