“Empty The Shelters,” Bissell Pet Foundation’s annual free adoption day, returns to Michigan April 29 and for the first year, The Humane Society of Huron Valley is on the list of participating shelters. Joining more than 60 other shelters statewide, the event is responsible for finding forever homes for 1,900 animals in 2016 and Bissell hopes to exceed that number this year.
“Empty the Shelters brings attention to companion animals who, for no fault of their own, are homeless,” says Wendy Welch, Marketing Director of HSHV. “Some animal lovers start to get concerned when you say ‘free adoption,’ but the research shows that events like this not only attract new people to adopt but, importantly, good pet owners. Studies have shown that people who don’t pay a fee when they adopt a pet are no more likely (and in some cases, less likely) to return their pet.
But adopting a pet without an adoption fee does not mean it is less of a financial commitment. Welch explains that a free adoption isn’t without cost. “Adoption is a commitment and a new friend requires food, toys, veterinary care and (incurs) other costs,” Welch says. “We have a discussion about true cost and other considerations with each potential adopter, and it’s important to note that our adoption process remains the same, no matter what the fee.”
So, for prospective adopters, giddy to check out HSHV during the “Empty The Shelters” event , according to Welch, “It’s essential . . to consider your lifestyle, your family’s lifestyle and your future plans. Sure, you may not know everything that will happen in the future, but you will know if you’ll be home for the next few weeks to train a puppy.
“Think about your resources – time, energy, finances, support. A puppy is going to require different resources than a house-trained dog. A kitten requires a longer commitment than an FeLV positive cat. Think about what an animal would need to tolerate in your house – and what you’d be willing to tolerate (or not!) with an animal in your house. Think about what’s important to you. Is it important that the animal be social with other cats or dogs, or do you just want a loyal companion for you? Do you want a buddy who clings to you, or would you prefer a more independent soul? Can you tolerate counter surfing? Barking or meowing? Chewing or scratching?
Remember: you’re adding a family member – which is exciting – but affects everyone in your family. Not to scare anyone away – there are LOTS of different pets for LOTS of different people in LOTS of different situations. It’s just important that you be honest with yourself in order for us to help you find the right animal for you.
Can’t make it to the “Empty The Shelters” event? HSHV has a calendar full of events through the spring including the annual “Walk & Wag” fundraiser, the shelter’s biggest fundraising event, on Saturday, May 20.
For more info on Empty The Shelters: https://www.bissellpetfoundation.org/events/empty-the-shelters/
For more info on HSHV:https://www.hshv.org/