Overcrowded Arizona Animal Welfare League waives adoption fees

Animal shelters in Phoenix are struggling to keep up with the number of pets without homes this summer and are encouraging people to adopt through programs and reduced adoption costs.

In an effort to reduce crowding, the Arizona Animal Welfare League is hosting a Summer of Love adoption event, which waives the adoption fee on a select 20 dogs and cats, according to Kimberly Vermillion, director of marketing and communication for the Arizona Animal Welfare League .

The event will run from June 21-26.

“We don’t require appointments, so if you’re interested in adopting, you can just stop by during our business hours to meet with an adoption counselor, and we can help you find your new best friend,” Vermillion said.

She said summer months mark the breeding season for cats across the country, but with Phoenix and southern Arizona’s high temperatures, “kitten season” can last from March all the way through October.

As a result, many animal shelters are overwhelmed by the number of cats and kittens in their care.

Interested adopters can view available pets, like Sopie, and schedule an appointment online at azhumane.org/adopt.

While its capacity fluctuates on a weekly basis based on what resources are available, the Arizona Humane Society is currently taking care of 1,200 pets total — 684 of which are at foster homes, with the vast majority of those animals being kittens.

“Every summer is definitely the most challenging,” said Bretta Nelson, public relations manager for the Arizona Humane Society.

Vermillion said the Arizona Animal Welfare League is running at its capacity, housing more than 330 animals at its location.

Adopt, don’t shop: These pets may be up for adoption in Phoenix-area shelters

The shelter also is preparing to take in more pets on the Fourth of July, a night when many pets get spooked by fireworks and may get separated from their owners.

“With shelters already being very full, including ours, we just know that there’s an increased need from our community and we need to be able to support them and bring more animals into our shelter and we need to adopt some out to make room,” Vermillion said.

The Arizona Humane Society also has held and will continue to hold events with reduced adoption fees over the summer.

“If anyone is looking to adopt, now is definitely the time to do so,” Nelson said.

She also encouraged those interested in helping to volunteer with the Arizona Humane Society or consider fostering animals. For more information on getting involved, visit the Arizona Humane Society’s website.

For more information on adoptable pets through the Arizona Animal Welfare League’s Summer of Love event, visit its website.

Reach breaking news reporter Sam Burdette at [email protected] or on Twitter @SuperSafetySam.

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