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Local Shelters Gather for National Pet Adoption Weekend

Morgan Austin

With the changing of the season comes National Pet Adoption Weekend, an event hosted locally by Springfield’s PetSmart Friday through Sunday, Sept. 11-13. 

At stores all across the country, PetSmart Charities combine with local shelters to help place a furry friend with a loving family. 

This year, there are several shelters bringing adoptable animals to the store in the hopes of finding a ‘forever family’. Each shelter will bring a portion of its available pets to the event where attendees can, walk, and play with dogs and cats ready for adoption.

Branson’s Tri-Lakes Humane Society is among the participating shelters. Opened in 1988, the no-kill shelter adopts out nearly 1,000 animals annually. Like other local shelters, Tri-Lakes works to collect stray animals from the Ozarks area and redistribute them to loving homes.

“The Ozarks has a really major issue with unwanted animals, stray animals, and animals that are not spayed and neutered,” says Billie Edwards, a Tri-Lakes board member and volunteer.

The goal for all pet rescues, getting these animals off the streets and into shelters, means less strays running loose in and more companions for caring homes; a pursuit that PetSmart shares.

The pet supplies store acts as a satellite area for shelters to bring and display some of their animals each Saturday; magnifying awareness and helping connect pet-wanting families with family-wanting pets.

“We now have another place besides our shelters to try to get our animals loving homes and off the streets.” Edwards said.

Aside from adoption, these non -profit shelter will accept donations of food, blankets, cleaning supplies and money. In addition, volunteer help is always welcomed to maintain the shelter and to transport the animals to PetSmart on Saturdays.