“There are so many dogs here, it’s sad,” she said, as Nero lathered her with kisses. “Why pay $1,000 for purebreds? They’re over-bred and this dog doesn’t have a home.”
This first-ever event was part of Nevada Week for the Animals and was organized by the Nevada Humane Society, Best Friends Animal Society, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Northern Nevada and the Shakespeare Animal Fund. Twenty animal rescue groups and two dozen animal welfare groups from northern Nevada and California came together with the goal of adopting out 100 animals.
“It’s the ‘critical mass’ theory,” said Julie Snyder, a volunteer with Best Friends Animal Society. “When all the groups get together there’s more of a selection. We can do more as a united group than as individuals.”
It didn’t take long for the critical mass theory to take effect. Before 11 a.m. — less than an hour after the event started — there was an announcement that 32 animals had already been adopted.
Each organization at the event had its own set of adoption rules and procedures. All have some sort of screening process, some of which allowed adopted animals to be taken home immediately. Other groups require a home inspection before the animal would be turned over to the new owner.
Snyder said some groups also help prospective owners match a dog to their lifestyle. Some dogs will match better with children than others, while some are appropriate for apartments and others need more room and are better for houses with yards.
“It is to not only determine if it is a good home, but we want to match an animal to a situation,” Snyder said.
In the situation of Tawny Lemire, a self-described “puppy slut” from Washoe Valley, the perfect dog will be hard to find because her previous dog was “the epitome of perfection.” Lemire’s previous dog, Jasper, died two years ago and now her daughters are bugging her to get a new dog. They want a black lab, Lemire said, but she’d prefer a yellow lab. Either way, she said a new dog will have to get along with their cat. Lemire’s two daughters were out camping Saturday, but they might have a canine or feline surprise when they get home.
“They might have one or two of both,” Lemire said.
Judy Scott, the volunteer coordinator for the Northern Nevada SPCA, said the organization adopted out the 12 puppies it brought within just a few hours. SPCA was one of the organizations allowing pets to be taken home the same day.
“Every animal that gets adopted out today means we get to go back to Washoe County Animal Services and get another dog,” Scott said. “It basically means we’re saving two lives.”
The costs to adopt animals varied but were usually in the range of $150 to $250. Adoptions from each agency included the cost to spay or neuter the animal and install a microchip that contained the owner’s contact information and could be scanned if the animal were lost and picked up by animal control.
Caira Hane, a 24-year-old Sparks resident, came to the Super Adoption to pick out a new friend for her 8-month-old boxer mix, Malibu. She settled on Token, a white boxer mix puppy, from Reno-based Boxers and Buddies. Hane said Malibu was also adopted from a shelter and that she prefers to find her pets there.
“You know your money is going to the right place and not to people who are just trying to make a buck off animals,” she said. “These dogs had a bad experience when they came into the world and need someone to love them.”