With the holiday season here, no pet should have to be without a family to call their own. To ensure pets get a chance to go from shelter kennels to the cozy couches of loving homes, BISSELL Pet Foundation is hosting its “Empty the Shelters – Holiday Hope” reduced-fee adoption event now through Dec. 11.
This lifesaving event, the largest funded adoption event in the country, began in 2016 with a goal of encouraging more families to choose adoption. Nearly 160,000 pets have found loving homes since its inception. “Empty the Shelters” is BISSELL Pet Foundation’s largest program, partnering with 560 animal welfare organizations in 47 states and Canada to reduce adoption fees.
"BISSELL Pet Foundation is in constant communication with our shelter partners across the country and they are struggling with unprecedented increases in owner surrenders and longer stays for pets," said Cathy Bissell, founder of BISSELL Pet Foundation. "With so many great pets waiting in shelters, our ‘Empty the Shelters – Holiday Hope’ event is the perfect opportunity to save a life through adoption and create space to give another homeless pet a chance. If you can’t adopt, please consider fostering.”
Phoenix area shelters, including the Arizona Animal Welfare League, Arizona Humane Society, Maricopa County Animal Care and Control and Pinal County Animal Care and Control, are all benefiting from the reduced-fee adoption event through Sunday, Dec. 11.
Arizona Animal Welfare League (AAWL), with locations at its main shelter in Phoenix, 25 N. 40th St., and at the Chandler Fashion Center, is hoping this event helps Dina, a 7-year-old pooch seeking its forever home. Dina came to AAWL from a rural rescue partner in March 2021 and has been adopted and returned six times. She is a sweetie but isn’t a fan of other dogs. Every time she’s been returned, it’s because they don’t have adequate space or a yard for Dina. They're hoping Dina will find her forever home through this sponsored reduced-fee adoption event through Sunday.
Maricopa County Animal Care and Control (MCACC) is offering fee-waived adoptions for dogs of all ages through Sunday at its East Valley and West Valley shelters. At the last “Empty the Shelters” event in October, 262 dogs found their forever homes at MCACC.
“The ‘Empty the Shelters’ event couldn’t come at a more perfect time. We are over capacity at both our shelter locations and would love nothing more than to get dogs into a comfortable, loving home for the holidays and beyond,” said Kim Powell, communications officer for MCACC.
Founded in 2011 by Cathy Bissell, the BISSELL Pet Foundation is a national animal welfare organization dedicated to ending pet homelessness. Its work has touched the lives of nearly 590,000 pets and counting. This partnering with animal shelters across the country supports participating organizations with reimbursement for each pet adopted, adoptive families pay no more than $50 to bring home a fully vaccinated, spayed/neutered and microchipped pet.
“Shelters are overcrowded and in desperate need of support due to slowed adoption rates and increased length of stay for pets," said Bissell. “With so many people seeking to add pets to their family around this time of year, our ‘Empty the Shelters – Holiday Hope’ event is the perfect opportunity to make a difference in your community by saving a life and creating space to give another homeless pet a chance."
Although pets can feel like a gift in terms of the joy they bring to life, Bissel reminds prospective pet parents that adopting a pet during the holidays is a long-term commitment, a lifetime commitment for the adopted pet. BISSELL Pet Foundation urges families to do their research about the pet they are interested in adopting, as well as adoption requirements. For more information on adopting or donating to “Empty the Shelters,” visit bissellpetfoundation.org/