FARMERS BRANCH (CBSDFW.COM) – Animal shelters across North Texas are full to overflowing, and it’s taxing the limits of their facilities while stretching their human resources thin.
So shelters are thinking up some unusual promotions to get pets adopted. In Farmers Branch, Tuesday was Red, Wags and Blue day, where residents could adopt a dog or cat for $35. Customers from other cities pay $50 for adoption.
One, Mary Whitehead, was leaning towards adopting Scholz, a Schnauzer mix. She wants a dog that’s quiet.
“And one that’s mild-mannered and could be a nice companion for me,” she adds.
Workers were more than happy to play matchmaker.
“All the shelters about now are at full capacity,” says Farmers Branch Animal Adoption Center Manager Ethel Strother. “It’s puppy and kitten season and without spaying and neutering of pets; it’s just an explosion of animals.”
Metroplex Animal Coalition spokeswoman Jonnie England said the area’s mild winter meant animals began breeding earlier than usual.
For instance, where a cat might normally produce two litters a season, “an unaltered pet this year could have three litters of kittens so that just adds to the already overfull shelters and rescue groups.”
Promotions help get animals adopted; Dallas is offering half-price this month and Carrollton just offered a discount on pets with black fur.
Other resources include rescue groups and foster owners. Stella and Tommy are temporary residents at Maeleska Fletes’s home as they work through issues from running wild on the street.
“You care for the dog’s day-to-day needs, you help them overcome any issues insecurities, anything they have developed being a rescue dog,” she said.
Dogs like Stella and Tommy, both pit bull mixes, will go to weekend placement shows or have reviews posted online. It’s a lot of time and expense that comes out of these peoples’ pockets. Most don’t get reimbursed. But Fletes says it’s OK.
“Think of how many more get homes and are saved because I continually have the revolving door with more dogs coming through,” Fletes said.
“They want adoptions, transfers, re-homing to rescue groups –– give them another chance. Give them another chance instead of catch, cage, kill,” she said.
England says more and more people are demanding humane treatment and placement of strays. Scholz, by the way, is now “Shadow.” He found a home with Mary Whitehead.
Farmers Branch placed six dogs and six cats with homes during its Red, Wags and Blue promotion.