Watch CBS News

Call Kurtis: Pet shelters, gas prices, and insurance

Call Kurtis: Pets' Lives, insurance accusations and Geico closing CA offices
Call Kurtis: Pets' Lives, insurance accusations and Geico closing CA offices 02:22

Area animal shelters are overwhelmed. The problem is being blamed on delayed care during the pandemic and inflation.

"This is the toughest summer that I have seen in 13 years of being involved in animal welfare," said Mirah Horowitz with Lucky Dog Animal Rescue.

Horowitz and her team rescue pets from high-kill shelters. Those needing a home are outpacing people looking for pets.

"I have never turned down puppies," said Horowitz. "I am turning down puppies this year."

Data from Best Friends Animal Society show 355,000 cats and dogs were killed in U.S. shelters in 2021 -- the first increase in five years. Some shelters are understaffed, turning away pets. And more are getting surrendered because families who can't afford them are facing touch choices.

"We had to make a decision about you know, we need a roof for the baby and us," said Florida resident Kathya Perec.

Another factor? Suspending spaying and neutering during the pandemic.

"Now, we're in the fourth generation of those unwanted litters that came out of that time!" said Horowitz.

Keep in mind, that some SPCA vet clinics offer low-cost vet care.

"There is a wide spectrum of what pet owners can afford and all along that spectrum there's a limit to how much people can afford to pay for care," said Dr. Carolyn Brownw with the ASPCA Community Medicine Dept.


Amid the country's inflation, one thing that is getting cheaper: Gas. It's down about $1 in Sacramento from the peak in June. The California average is now $5.61 a gallon. In Sacramento, it's $5.45. AAA credits the decline with a drop in demand, with almost two-thirds of Americans changing their driving habits since March.


The state is going after Mercury Insurance, saying it steered good drivers toward more expensive policies.
The insurance commissioner says he's pursuing the maximum penalties allowed. Good drivers are mandated to get a 20 percent good driver discount.

Geico suddenly shut down its 38 California offices. The Sacramento Bee reports that the insurer is no longer writing new policies for customers over the phone. That means you can only get one online. I reached out to Geico on the reason for its shutdown, and what it means for current customers, but did not hear back. They told the Bee that they remain available for their 2 million+ current California customers. 

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.