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Pet foundation fights shelter overcrowding

1,800-plus pets adopted in nationwide emergency event to relieve animal shelters

Cora, a one-eyed, 9-1/2-year-old dog in Cummings, Georgia, found a forever home. Courtesy photo.

 GRAND RAPIDS—More than 1,800 dogs and cats found forever homes over the course of six days through the emergency “Empty the Shelters: Big Dog & Cat Crisis” event with BISSELL Pet Foundation. The event was hosted in 97 shelters in 29 states. BISSELL Pet Foundation aided shelters experiencing overcrowding by sponsoring reduced fees for harder to place pets, including adult cats and large and senior dogs.

Sassy, a 14-year-old cat, with kidney disease, was adopted from Sanilac County Humane Society in Michigan. Courtesy photo.

Approximately 808 adult cats and 997 large or senior dogs were adopted during the event hosted Aug. 16-22, 2021, including 33 cat and 49 dog “foster failures,” (when a foster family plans to adopt the pet) and a total of 1,887 animal lives were touched because of the effort.

Since Jan. 2021, BISSELL Pet Foundation has helped find homes for 12,427 pets and provided $927,100 in direct funding to the shelter partners through “Empty the Shelters.”

“With shelters struggling with overcrowding across the country, the adoptions through this emergency ‘Empty the Shelter’ have opened up space to help another 1,805 pets in need,” said Cathy Bissell, founder of BISSELL Pet Foundation. “We thank our partner shelters for the incredible work they did to help these pets find families, and of course a heartfelt thank you to all of the people who chose adoption and gave these pets a second chance at life.”

While thousands of lives were saved, here are just a few notable adoption stories from throughout the country:

Cora, a one-eyed, 9-1/2-year-old dog in Cummings, Georgia, found a fantastic home to live out her golden years after four months in the care of Animal Ark Rescue.

A diagnosis of kidney disease didn’t stop Sassy, the 14-year-old calico from Carsonville, Michigan, from securing her forever home during Sanilac County Humane Society’s event.

Houston Humane Society adopted out one of their longest residents during this emergency Empty the Shelters. Shelby, a six-year-old dog, found her family after 150 days at the shelter.

The next “Empty the Shelters” event is scheduled for October. For more information on adopting or donating to “Empty the Shelters,” visit www.bissellpetfoundation.org/empty-the-shelters.

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