If you've been saying you really want to help animals but don't know how, now's your chance: Dallas Animal Services (DAS) is currently overflowing with dogs and needs adopters and fosters to step in and help.
The shelter specifically has too many medium-size and large dogs, and they've run out of kennels. If adopters and/or fosters were to take some dogs home, either temporarily or permanently, it would create space for hundreds more pets that are expected to arrive this week.
DAS Director MeLissa Webber calls it a "crisis."
"We have over 375 dogs in our building and have run out of space to hold the medium and large dogs coming in," Webber says. "As an open admission shelter, we can't stop taking in pets. Despite our best efforts and most creative solutions, we are now out of options. We need the immediate help of the community to avoid heartbreaking decisions tomorrow."
Their goal is to prevent the deaths of healthy, adoptable dogs who would be euthanized because there is no space, and they've created a fast-track process for new dog fosters with both virtual and person options.
Fostering is a practice where you take the dog into your home for a short period of time. Most foster cases last from a few days to a few weeks and DAS can provide necessary pet care supplies such as crates, food, and bowls.
"Whether you can take a pet in for three days or three months, becoming a foster will literally save a life," Webber says.
- Filling out an application for fosters on www.BeDallas90.org with a virtual orientation that prepares you for caring for the dog in your home and shows how to can select a dog in need.
- Having a short phone call with the Foster Team who can answer your questions, match you with the right pet, and finalize your paperwork.
- Pick up the dog curbside — you don't even need to enter the shelter building.
If you prefer to see a dog in person, visit the shelter during normal business hours. A staff member will walk you through the process so that you can take the dog home right away. If you need help finding a good match, their onsite team is also available to make recommendations.
For those who are considering adopting, Webber suggests visiting in person. "The online process typically takes a few days to complete and right now, every minute counts," she says.
Currently, all DAS pets are free to adopt and come spayed/neutered, vaccinated, microchipped and with a voucher for a free veterinary visit. DAS offers daily adoptions inside its main shelter on Westmoreland Road and at its PetSmart Everyday Adoption Center on North Coit Road, as well as on its website at www.BeDallas90.org.
DAS is open for adoptions and foster inquiries at 1818 North Westmoreland Rd. Monday-Friday from 1-7 pm, and Saturday-Sunday from 11 am-6 pm.