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FOTAS: Hounds of love available at the Aiken County Animal Shelter

Skin and bones. Found starving and scared with pressure sores on their bodies from lying on concrete for long hours at a time. Clearly neglected and possibly abused, the pair of dogs playing in the intake exercise yard would be forgiven if they were bitter and angry. But they show nothing but love. Despite their difficult journey and the pain that came with it, the alarmingly thin red hound and her tri-colored canine pal are sweet and affectionate to every person they encounter.

“The hounds cling to us for hugs and attention,” said Kathy Jacobs, FOTAS programs coordinator. “We provided them with donated toys and big, comfortable dog beds for their bony bodies.”

These two female hounds recently arrived at the shelter and are in stray hold for five days. The red dog had lacerations on her snout that had to be stitched up and both dogs’ ribs prominently show through their skin and fur.

“We don’t know their story,” Jacobs said. “We can only speculate. Maybe they were potential hunting dogs and were abandoned or ran away. We just know they are safe now, getting well and are so happy to be here.”

So happy, in fact, the red hound could not stop wagging her tail and within hours of getting to the shelter, made her kennel a bloody mess. She thumped her tail against the concrete walls of her kennel so many times, the blunt force trauma split the tip of it wide open. Her tail is wrapped now and she’s fine. This “happy tail syndrome” in shelters is common with many breeds, including hounds. It is reflective of their personality: bright, energetic and super friendly.

These young females in intake are just two of the many hounds the shelter receives on a pretty consistent basis. Currently on the adoption floor is Aiden, a senior hound so affectionate, he puts his paw out to greet people and sometimes wraps his right front leg around your knee as you pet him. He has been waiting many weeks to find a good home.

So, please help our hounds at the shelter. Consider adopting one for your family. Hounds are known to be gentle, loyal and enjoy being around people. They rarely need grooming, come in all sizes, are smart and are usually great with kids.

To make an appointment to adopt Aiden, another hound or any other homeless pet at the county animal shelter, please call, 803.642.1537 (option #3) or email

Their lives are in our hands.

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