This past Saturday, our most recent adoption special, “Name Your Own Adoption Fee” led to more than 20 dogs and cats finding new home and a life beyond the shelter.
This time of year, many shelters around the country are very crowded. Warmer weather brings in more kittens and puppies, creating more pressure on groups like the Aiken SPCA to move as many through the system as possible.
Recently, a shelter in North Carolina ran an adult cat adoption special for $3 each and cleared the cages of adult cats. In Charleston, the Charleston Animal Society offered free adoptions while supplies lasted and adopted out all of the 250 animals in the shelter in four days.
One question I get often is, “Why don’t shelters do this all the time?”
First, it’s an economic consideration. Groups like the Aiken SPCA are charitable organizations and simply can’t afford to dramatically reduce adoption fees often. Sometimes a business or group of individuals step up and sponsor adoption fees for some pets, and we can offer specials like we did on Saturday.
Another question we get during any of these adoption specials is, “Do we screen these owners?”
The answer is, of course we do. Nothing changes in the screening process at all. We love each and every animal that comes through our doors, and the last thing we want to do is see one of them go to a home where they won’t be treated well.
Others wonder if these adoption specials truly solve the problem of too many pets in shelters. The truth is that these events are energizing and rewarding for our staff and volunteers, but they are still just a Band-Aid on the overall problem. All shelters, including the currently empty one in Charleston, will quickly fill up again by the time you have read this story.
At the moment we have animals left over from a hoarding court case earlier this year and many others from a trailer park I wrote about last week.
Soon, we will have more from transfers from local animal control departments that have asked for our help.