In July, Tammy Godusi volunteered at the Johnston County Pet Adoption Center in Smithfield. A frequent volunteer with animals at the Wake County SPCA, Godusi and others from Johnston County wanted to help close to home.
But she was astonished to find the animals poorly cared for and many chronically ill. Dogs weren’t being walked. They were only watered twice each day. There were several caged dogs in small rooms.
“From what we were told, it was a staffing issue,” Godusi said.
It was clear volunteers were needed to help.
But for the past several months, volunteers have been kept out of the facility.
“They shut the door in our face,” Godusi said.
They were told the facility was being renovated and couldn’t allow the volunteers in. One month became two and two became three. Godusi and other volunteers became very upset, knowing the animals at the center wouldn’t get the care they needed.
The volunteers went to the Johnston County Manager’s office for help and got the community involved. Godusi went before the County Commissioners in early November and had more than 500 names on a petition to open the center to helpers.