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Clear the Shelters virtual adoption event ends today

Posted August 21, 2020 9:52 a.m. EDT
Updated August 31, 2020 9:39 a.m. EDT

Clear the Shelters officially ends Monday, but hundreds of animals still need homes across the state.

View a list of participating shelters.

Clear the Shelters has gone virtual this month due to coronavirus, and dozens of shelters and rescue groups across North Carolina are offering adoption specials for the entire month of August.

Cumberland County Animal Control Director Elaine Smith said the Fayetteville shelter on Corporation Drive has a goal of adopting out 300 animals -- the maximum capacity the shelter can hold -- by Aug. 31.

Smith said there is especially a need for adopters interested in large dogs.

Adoption fees have been reduced to $28 for the entire month of August. Included in the fee is a rabies vaccination, microchip and spay or neuter operation. Smith said dogs, cats, small animals and even two chickens have been adopted so far.

"We are doing fine, but we are a little behind," Smith told WRAL in mid-August. "I hope to hit 300 -- we may or may not, but we feel like it's going as well as it could given the situation."

Usually, lines form outside of the Cumberland County Animal Shelter on Clear the Shelters day, but during COVID-19, adopters are asked to look at available pets online and make an appointment to visit the shelter to keep social distancing.

Clear the Shelters isn't just about finding homes for animals -- it raises awareness about the need for adoption.

In June, Wake County Animal Center Director Dr. Jennifer Federico told WRAL News that more than 10,000 dogs and cats are killed in North Carolina animal shelters each year because there is not enough room to hold them all.

Cumberland County and Robeson County animals each reported killing more than 3,000 of dogs and cats in 2019, and many other North Carolina shelters also struggled. The shelters reach out to rescue groups and fosters for help, and some staff members even take animals home, but often they are left without options.

Learn more about Clear the Shelters and how to help shelters during the pandemic.

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