COVID-19 Silver Lining: More People Fostering Pets
With many parts of the world essentially shut down, so have animal shelters been. Many shelters across the United States alone are either closed or open for adoption by appointment only.
This has left shelter officials worried about how to get pets fostered and adopted when people can’t get in to see them.
But it turns out that mandates from local, state and federal officials to stay at home may be a benefit to shelters, as animal lovers are coming out in pretty big numbers to foster and adopt pets. Especially families with kids and the elderly.
According to a TMZ article, people are meeting pets and doing adoptions with online applications and appointments only, but they ARE reaching out. Nikole Bresciani is the CEO of the Inland Valley Humane Society in Pomona, California. She told TMZ that since kids are home from school, they’ve seen a rise in families reaching out to add a dog or cat to their family.
Patricia Lara is the owner of Wonder Paws Rescue in Fort Lauderdale. In an interview with NBC 6 News, she said that foster applications are up by 1,005%! She said that in a typical week, they get one application, and they’re now bringing in 15-20.
And it’s not just families with kids who are looking to bring in new furry family members. As the novel Coronavirus has a significant threat to the elderly, more seniors are looking to help ease the feelings of loneliness and isolation they feel as they self-quarantine for their own safety.
Randa Richter is with the SPCA of Florida and told TMZ that they’d seen at least a 20% rise in the number of elderly people looking to adopt a pet. Randa believes this is because their normal activities at the local senior center or wherever are all canceled and they want a friend to ease the loneliness as they’re at home.
And, Randa says she also has seen a rise in couples with no kids but now both working from home looking to adopt. As we previously reported, NOW is the best time to foster or adopt, as you are more likely to have extra time to train and bond with your new four-legged family member.
Even better, Randa told TMZ that they’re even seeing a big surge in volunteers. High School kids not in school, seniors–they have more free time, and walking dogs, caring for cats and cleaning facilities can all be done while still socially distancing.
The Miami-Dade County Animal Shelter is reporting that foster numbers are more than doubled since the beginning of March, and rescue groups are reporting more adoptions for the month of March this year than in comparison to March last year.
It’s a win-win that makes sense in a time when not much else is. It’s something you can do, right now, to help pets. But you’re also helping yourself in the process, and that’s one silver lining the Coronavirus can’t shut down!
More by Lori Ennis