Labor of love: caring for strays at the Hanceville kennel

Snoop is a recent resident at the City of Hanceville’s kennel. He has now moved on to the Cullman County Animal Shelter. (Christy Perry for The Cullman Tribune)

HANCEVILLE, Ala. – On a hot Wednesday afternoon, Hanceville City Clerk Tania Wilcox spent her lunch break visiting with and taking care of a handsome black and white lab mix who was found as a stray in the city. The lab is lovingly referred to as “Snoop.”

It is always her hope to reunite lost pets with their rightful owners and to ensure the animals are well cared for while staying in the kennel at Hanceville City Hall.

Oftentimes, when a stray dog is picked up in the jurisdiction of the Hanceville Police Department, it is brought to the city’s kennel.

Wilcox explained, “We try to hold a stray for five days before taking it to the Cullman County Animal Shelter. This gives our residents an opportunity to find their lost dog, and it’s closer.”

Taking care of stray dogs has its challenges, but Wilcox, an animal lover, is willing to put in the extra time to achieve a happy ending.

“We always take their pictures and put them on the City’s Facebook page and hope the owner will come by to claim their dog,” she said. “We are not set up to take in surrenders. Owners will still need to take animals to the county shelter to do that.”

Wilcox takes a personal interest in the dogs who do find their way to the Hanceville kennel.

“I check on them as much as I can,” she said. “I worry about them being too hot or too cold or if they have spilled their water or food. Especially on these really hot days, I am running out here to give them fresh, cool water.”

Wilcox said she’s appreciative of community members who voice concerns.

She said, “I welcome it. If you see that they have spilled their water or need something, I want to know, and it’s nice to know the community cares about them, too.”

Dogs not claimed by their owners in Hanceville after five days are taken to Cullman County Animal Shelter where they will be placed on an additional seven-day stray hold. Wilcox encourages Hanceville residents to always check with the City of Hanceville and the Cullman County Animal Shelter when searching for a lost pet.

Snoop has moved on now from the Hanceville kennel to the Cullman County Animal Shelter.

For more information on the process of reclaiming a pet in Hanceville, contact Hanceville City Hall at 256-352-9830.

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Christy Perry