Dogs, cats and rabbits were the stars of today’s Mayor’s Animal Alliance Adoptapalooza Event at Union Square Park.
Many were hoping to charm potential adopters and find a home.
"It’s a great event to be outside and what we really need is people to come out and adopt,” said Jane Hoffman,” president of the Mayor’s Animal Alliance. “We have so many animals coming into our shelters and rescue groups and we really need New Yorkers to step up.”
It turns out many did: there were almost 300 adoptions, according to the Alliance.
Nearly 29,000 animals enter the shelters every year in New York City. About 7.6 million pets enter animal shelters nationwide, according to data from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA).
Unfortunately, thousands of them are pit bulls that, because of perceptions of viciousness, are not wanted in many housing developments throughout the city.
“There’s this thought that they are somehow bad dogs and dangerous dogs and in fact they’re not,” Hoffman said. “It depends on who raises them and also all dogs need training. It’s a misguided restriction, I think what it really is it should be the deed, not the breed.”
She added that when adopting a pet, people should not adopt based on looks, instead to find a pet that fits their lifestyle and can meet the adopter’s expectations so it can remain in their home.
This is the second Adoptapalooza of the year and dozens of rescue organizations and animal shelters throughout the city were present.
The NYC Department of Health was also in attendance for pet owners who wanted to license their dogs, as the law requires. ABout 60 dogs became licensed at the event, the Alliance said.
In addition, the Office of Emergency Management encouraged pet owners to microchip their four legged companions and offered to do so for a small fee, but the first 50 were free.
“This is really great to learn about the different groups and get a sense of what they do,” said Leslie Kroupa, 35, potential dog adopter. “It’s a good way to educate people.”