A sudden influx of animals in need of care has prompted the Humane Society of Kitchener Waterloo and Stratford Perth to slash adoption fees during a two-day pop-up blitz this week in an effort to make more room for incoming animals.
On Tuesday, local humane society officials said their shelters in Stratford and Kitchener currently have 200 animals, 80 of which are ready to be adopted. With a total capacity of roughly 250 animals between both shelters and the organization’s roster of pet fosters, Calla James, the society’s director of community engagement and outreach, said it urgently needs to make room for a backlog of animals.
“Springtime normally is pretty busy for us because it’s kitten season, but kitten season has definitely expanded longer, longer and longer over the last number of years,” James said. “We’re also seeing quite a significant number of puppies this year. We haven’t seen that the last few years. If you check our website right now, we actually have over 30 dogs available for adoption and that has not been common over the last number of years. … We also have more people continuing to call for support for rehoming their pets as well, and we continue to have pets come in through all of our animal-services contracts across our 13 municipalities.
“So when we’re starting to near capacity, we take a look at what we can do to find more homes.”
According to James, there are currently a total of 70 animals waiting to be surrendered into their shelters: 30 in Stratford-Perth and 40 in Kitchener-Waterloo.
The humane society is hosting pop-up adoption events from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday this week at both shelters – 250 Riverbend Dr. in Kitchener and 125 Griffith Rd. in Stratford. During the event, regular adoption appointments will be suspended in favour of walk-ins. Adoption fees will also be lowered as follows:
- Adult dogs – regular $400 adoption fee, now $250;
- Adult cats – regular $325 adoption fee, now $200;
- Rabbits – regular $50 adoption fee, now $15; and
- Guinea Pigs – regular $25 adoption fee, now $15.
Puppies, kittens and other small animals will remain available for adoption at their regular fees – $325 for kittens and $700 for puppies. All dog, puppy, cat and kitten adoption fees include their spay-neuter surgeries, parasite treatment, microchipping, vaccines and the first order of food. The cost of adopting rabbits also includes spay-neuter surgeries and microchipping.
“On our website, we have all of their pictures and bios, so you can check them out in advance,” James said. “Next to their names, you’ll see whether they’re in Kitchener or Stratford. That makes note of which centre they’re available for adoption from. … If it is a busy event, we will take people first come, first serve, and we’ll try to get to everybody as quickly as possible.”
In addition to looking for forever homes for animals currently in shelter and ready to be adopted, James said the local humane society is always in need of new pet fosters to provide more comfortable and individualized care for animals away from the shelter. All costs for pet fosters are covered by the society.
For more information on the animals available for adoption and on how to become a pet foster, visit kwsphumane.ca.