AUGUSTA (WJBF) – Several local animal shelters and rescue groups will join more than 1,400 others on Saturday in a nationwide “Clear The Shelters” event which provides free or discounted adoptions to find homes for as many adoptable pets as possible.
In Aiken County, Friends Of The Animal Shelter (FOTAS) and the Aiken County Animal Shelter will participate in the event for the fourth consecutive year. Organizers say that in 2018 more than 50,000 pets found homes on “Clear The Shelters” day.
On a recent visit, NewsChannel 6 found one family that couldn’t wait until the weekend to take their new best friend home. Whitney Bunnell and her children made the drive from Batesburg to adopt Jacks, a 10 month-old retriever who stole their hearts because, among other things, he only has three legs.
“He’s just so cute to me,” said Bunnell. “I love his muzzle, his coloring, everything about him. He’s just a beautiful dog and despite the leg missing he’s just a sweet, wonderful, loving dog.”
While Jacks found his forever home, he left behind a bunch of buddies who still need one.
“We are full. We are at capacity,” said FOTAS Secretary Ellie Joos. “We’ve had a horrendous summer so far with more than 500 dogs coming in the last month alone and we’ve been averaging that since May.”
Saturday adoption fees will be waived from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
“We have big, small, male, female, really wonderful animals that are looking for perfect homes,” said Joos.
Each pet is already spayed or neutered, is up to date on shots and is microchipped. Organizers do caution that, while they hope to find homes for as many pets as possible, they are not looking to simply get rid of the animals, but to find them the perfect situation.
“If you can’t afford a vet you can’t afford a pet,” said Joos. “Even though they are free they do need continued care.”
That’s exactly what Jacks found on Thursday when he went home with his new family.
“There’s just so many of them that need homes that are just running around,” said Bunnell. “It was important to me to find somebody who would really use a home and I think we’re going to be the best fit for him.”
To find a shelter nearest you that is participating in the “Clear The Shelters” event on Saturday , click here.
To browse pets available for adoption, click on the shelter nearest you below: