BISSELL Pet Foundation and PetSmart Charities will hold free animal adoptions Saturday in Maricopa County as part of an event to help “Empty the Shelters.”
According to BISSELL Pet Foundation Program Assistant Kat Curtin,1,443 homeless pets from 12 sheltersacross the Valley will be up for adoption.
Potential adopters can go to any of the 20 different locations, including 10 local PetSmart stores to adopt a pet for free on July 22.
Curtin said PetSmart Charities will give BISSELL Pet Foundation a $100,000 grant to cover the cost of the adoption fees.
While the adoption fee is waived, the adoption process is still the same. Curtin said they won’t just be handing out pets for free, but that adopters still have to go through a vetting process to obtain a pet.
“This just ensures that these pets are going into the right homes versus just making it a free day,” Curtin said.
According to Curtin, BISSELL Pet Foundation, a non-profit organization, hopes to reduce the number animals in shelters and aims to support organizations that are committed to humane treatment and care of animals.
BISSELL Pet Foundation founder Cathy Bissell said in a statement that the goal of this event “is to encourage people to choose adoption first.”
Curtin said they expect hundreds of pets to find homes during the event, but is hinged on the response of the people in Maricopa County.
“There is a serious overpopulation problem, and these events help empty the shelters so that more pets can be moved into the shelter and the euthanasia rates are lowered in turn,” Curtin said.
The first Empty the Shelters event took place in Michigan in May 2016. PetSmart, which is headquartered in Phoenix, had previously sponsored an event with BISSELL Pet Foundation and recommended Maricopa County as the next place to hold this type of event.
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