(CNS) – A campaign to incentivize adoptions of homeless dogs and cats in Riverside County by offering them at low or no cost is scheduled for Saturday, and residents seeking to add a furry friend to their home were encouraged to visit the county’s shelters in Jurupa Valley and Thousand Palms.
“It’s our final push of the year to encourage residents to (take home) our homeless pets this holiday season,” Department of Animal Services Director Erin Gettis said.
The “Home for the Holidays” campaign is scheduled Saturday at the Western Riverside County Animal Shelter, 6851 Van Buren Blvd., Jurupa Valley, and the Coachella Valley Animal Campus, 72-050 Pet Land Place, Thousand Palms.
Both shelters will be open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Over the last month, 12,000 impounded canines and 5,000 impounded felines were adopted, thanks to promotions and transfers to rescue organizations that partner with the county, according to the Department of Animal Services.
Despite the positive momentum, more unwanted, abused and neglected pets have continued to fill the county’s shelters.
“As we have touched on previously — and something shelter organizations nationwide have experienced — the shortage of veterinarians and access to veterinary care are reasons for the ongoing pet overpopulation problem,” Gettis said. “We know there are too many unaltered animals in our community. People want to get their pets spayed or neutered, but oftentimes access to affordable surgeries is a major challenge.”
There are only four full-time veterinarians in business countywide, after many retired amid the coronavirus public health lockdowns, according to Gettis.
“We encourage pet owners to do their part, as best they can, to combat the overpopulation problem,” she said. “For those who can take in a shelter pet this season, we’ll be forever grateful.”
The Home for the Holidays effort features suspension of all spay/neuter, microchipping and vaccination fees. However, adopters will have to pay for canine licenses.
The fees vary, depending on where in the county adopters reside. Additional information is available at https://www.rcdas.org/index.php/services/dog-licensing.
Copyright 2022, City News Service, Inc.