Hundreds of dogs and cats crossed their paws in hopes to get adopted on Saturday during a nation wide event for shelter animals.
During the Clear the Shelters Day, hundreds of potential adopters lined up on an entire block at the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals’ (ASPCA) 92nd Street location.
Many were excited to meet their furry match among hundreds of dogs and cats at the shelter. Some even went home with two pets when initially they were only planning for one.
“I would take five if they would let me,” said Erica Pizarro, 29, who already owns three cats. “I had no idea about the event and I just lucked out.”
As part of the one-day event sponsored by NBC and Telemundo, shelters across the country agreed to waive the adoption fees. About a dozen states and more than 300 shelters across the country participated in the event, but each site still went through their individual adoption process.
“If you plan on going to a major event like this definitely do your homework and make sure have all the necessary requirements,” said Joseph Teixeira, manager of customer relations at the ASPCA. “Leave yourself enough time and be prepared for a wait and a crowd."
Teixeira added that despite the fact they were waiting for an influx of adopters to want kittens – since it is kitten season – they were overwhelmed with the majority of people looking to adopt a dog.
Some families like the Moores heard about the event and came from Coop City in the Bronx, with hopes that a new pet would ease the pain of losing an old one. Just a week ago they lost their beloved Turkish angora cat Muff Muff, who passed away of cancer at 15 years old.
“We were all crushed,” said Marcia Moore, 35. “He was definitely part of the family. I knew I had to get a replacement, but it wasn’t going to be the same.”
They opted to adopt two medium coat grey kittens - who they named Cobey and Coffee – and their two daughters’ could not be more excited.
The event helped adopt 18,034 pets nationwide and are still counting. The ASPCA alone adopted out 81 animals and granted $115,000 to 15 organizations nationwide for the event.
“It was very successful, it’s definitely a record breaking day,” said Teixeira. “As long as they (NBC and Telemundo) continue to do it, we would like to be a part of it.”