Dallas Animal Services aims to find a dream home for every animal during Clear the Shelters, its one-day event designed to get every pet in the shelter adopted. This year's event is August 15.
The idea hatched in 2014 when shelter representatives across North Texas gathered to discuss participating in a unified effort to find homes for the hundreds of pets sitting in shelters across Dallas-Fort Worth.
Last year, 38 shelters participated, from Irving to Arlington to Wylie, forming the largest adoption event in North Texas history. It exceeded expectations, with 149 animals adopted from Dallas Animal Services and 2,273 at shelters across North Texas. Citizens lined up at shelters, eager to be part of the action.
Compare that to a typical Saturday at Dallas Animal Services, when approximately 30 pets might be adopted.
This year, two media partners have signed on: NBC 5 and Telemundo 39, whose parent company, NBCUniversal, owns stations across the country. They've expanded the effort to other cities, and more than 300 shelters have signed up to participate.
Shelter staff recognize that a one-day event does not stop the tide of animals found abandoned or dropped off at the shelter every day. More than 150,000 animals die every year in shelters around Dallas-Fort Worth. But they welcome the exposure that the event brings, with the possible residual awareness of the dire straits for animals and shelters in Texas.
"This is a wonderful event that was hugely successful for us last year," says Jody Jones, manager of Dallas Animal Services.
Available animals include cats and dogs, puppies and kittens. Visit Dallas Animal Services at 1818 N. Westmoreland St., or go to ClearTheShelters.org for a list of participating shelters and detailed information. Hours may vary among shelters and other fees may apply.