FAQ: Clear the Shelters
Clear The Shelters is a nationwide pet adoption initiative that brings shelters, rescue groups, and adopters together to find loving homes for pets in need.Posted — Updated
What is Clear The Shelters?
Clear The Shelters is a nationwide pet adoption initiative that brings shelters, rescue groups, and adopters together to find loving homes for pets in need. This is done through partnerships between animal adoption groups and NBC-owned television stations. The event will be held throughout the month of August in 2022, and hundreds of animal organizations will participate across the country.
In central North Carolina, WRAL is partnering with 11 area shelters. Some organizations in the Triad and Charlotte area are also participating.
Within each shelter or rescue, there may be protocol differences, different application guidelines, and different adoption processes. Most will require a valid photo ID to adopt. Some may require things such as vaccination records of current pets and housing approval checks, while others may not.
It is recommended that interested adopters check with the organizations closest to them that are participating in the event to ask questions ahead of time and to be prepared prior to Aug. 18.
Won’t waiving or reducing adoption fees mean people are more likely to return or rehome pets? Won’t they think of them as having less worth or value?
What should I consider before adopting?
There are many things to consider when committing to a new member of the family! Cost, lifespan of the pet, your lifestyle, housing/landlord obstacles, and future plans are some of the most important.
Make sure you can financially care for a pet, including not only food, but also medical care (including preventative routine care).
Check with your landlord or housing complex if you don’t own your home and make sure everyone in the household is on board to adopt.
Most importantly, choose a pet that matches your lifestyle, both today and going forward. Consider activity level, ages in the home, whether you’ll be having children later, career goals and their effects, and whether you’ll move before you adopt a pet.
Be sure you can commit for good and that you and the pet you choose can adapt to any of the situations that may apply to you.
What pets need adoption the most?
Shelters and rescue groups always need adopters willing to consider those pets that are less likely to be adopted quickly. If you have the time and ability to open your home to a pet that may have a harder time finding an adopter, there are four major groups to consider!
Is it true that two cats are better than one?
It certainly often is true that adopting two cats or adding a second cat to your home can be beneficial for you and the animals. In the case of kittens, it’s almost always better to adopt a pair of kittens together if you can. Not only do they grow into lifelong friends, they also keep each other company while you’re away. Having a playmate to provide mental stimulation, teach good socialization and manners, and provide round-the-clock entertainment is the best way to have a happy (and less destructive!) kitten join your home.
For adult cats, there can also be many perks to having a pair, especially if you carefully make the decision with many factors in mind. If you have no cats at home and think you may be interested in two, ask staff if there’s a pair already bonded. Many cats come in together and would love to stay together for all the reasons above. If you only have one cat at home, he or she may still enjoy a companion, but be sure to make a slow and steady introduction and provide enough space for each cat to take his or her time to make friends. They are slower than dogs in many instances, but they will eventually appreciate having a buddy in most cases if they are introduced properly.
Staff can help you identify those shelter cats that may have lived with other cats in the past or those that seem interested in making friends with the cats around them.
If you definitely only want one cat or can only afford veterinary care for one, ask staff about adoptable cats that may prefer to be solo pets! In most cases, kittens will really benefit from the stimulation a buddy can provide, especially if you work away from home. But there may be young adult or older cats that would prefer to be your only feline and would be a great match for your needs, while having their needs met too.
If you are only interested in a young kitten and cannot take two, ask staff to point you in the direction of a few kittens that are well socialized and independent enough to succeed on their own.
I can’t adopt right now. Is there anything else I can do to help?
Shelters and rescues always have needs that go beyond adoption! While each has its own set of priorities, almost all can benefit from donations, volunteers and ambassadors!
Donations in the form of money, food/treats/supplies, or adoption fee sponsorships (when available) are great ways to help animal organizations.
If you prefer to help in other ways, ask if volunteers are needed and, if so, what areas need the most help. And even if you can’t give time or money, every organization needs community members out spreading the word about their services, the positive work they do, their animals, and messages about important topics like pet overpopulation.
Shelter staff may be chaotically busy during large adoption events, so if you are interested in helping out, take a business card and follow up with someone. Or leave your information with a staff member so that someone can follow up with you when there is time to have a great and productive conversation about how you can help the animals in your community benefit from you and your unique skill set.
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