The Daily Tar Heel

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Tuesday January 31st

Find your Valentine with animal adoption discounts from Orange County Animal Services

<p>Photo courtesy of Tenille Fox, &nbsp;spokesperson for Orange County Animal Services.&nbsp;</p>
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Photo courtesy of Tenille Fox,  spokesperson for Orange County Animal Services. 

Orange County Animal Services has a Valentine Adoption Special during February, which cuts the adoption fees for cats, kittens, dogs and puppies nearly in half.

 Cats are $55 to adopt, kittens $60, dogs $65 and puppies $70. Adoption fees cover the costs to spay or neuter, deworm, vaccinate, microchip, test for feline leukemia in cats and for heartworms in dogs. 

“It’s nice to have a special, as it helps to get our animals out there and find them good homes,” said Tenille Fox, spokesperson for Orange County Animal Services. “It really helps with exposure for us and outreach for the community — just getting people here and having them take a look.”

Prospective adopters can visit the shelter Monday through Saturday, where they can browse the available pets and have a meet and greet. If they choose to pursue adoption, they must fill out a small questionnaire for contact information and present an ID. If their animal has had all their medical work done, they can go home with their pet that day.  

Orange County Animal Services is dedicated to providing shelter, animal control services and decreasing animal overpopulation through proactive measures. They find homes and foster families not only for dogs and cats, but also guinea pigs, rabbits, birds and sometimes even goats. 

Aside from their Valentine Adoption Special, the shelter runs several other programs to increase adoptions throughout the year. They have a spring adoption month in April, cat adoption month in June, a back-to-school special in August and dog adoption month in October. In November and December, the shelter runs a “Home for the Holidays” special where they host a pet food drive, have their pets take pictures with Santa among other events. 

Every year from April through October, the shelter also offers a special where you can adopt two cats for the price of one. Year-round, they provide discounted prices on senior animals so that cats and dogs over eight-years-old are only $30 to adopt. For citizens over 65, the adoption fees for senior animals are waived entirely. 

“Their Facebook page is very active, and I see a lot of people become more interested when they have specials going on,” said Malinda Christian, who has adopted from OCAS three times. “I really think it’s a good thing and more shelters should do it, just so more animals get more opportunities to have homes.” 

Christian recently adopted her third cat from OCAS in December 2017. 

“I have recommended Orange County Animal Services to a lot of my family and friends,” Christian said. “I just think it’s a really great shelter, and they give all these animals such great opportunities.They are so loving and so kind, and they really care about what they’re doing. I just couldn’t see myself going to another shelter.” 

The shelter currently has five dogs and 10 cats looking to find their forever homes. You can find their list of adoptable animals on their website.  

“We really encourage the public to come and check us out and see all of our animals,” Fox said. 

Orange County, like many across the U.S., faces a pet overpopulation problem said Andi Morgan, Orange County Animal Services' assistant director. While many people choose to buy their animals from breeders, thousands of stray animals remain homeless every year. 

“If you adopt, you’re really saving two lives,” Morgan said. “You’re saving the one that you adopt, and you’re also not creating a demand for another to be bred and put into a supply and demand chain. I think of it as a double good, as you’re helping to solve the crisis by providing homes for pets when we have too many of them already.”

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