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Karen DeSouza pet adoption festival fills Walmart parking lot on Saturday
by AnnElise Hatjakes
Apr 20, 2010 | 1793 views | 0 0 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Tribune/Nathan Orme -
Oscar, a deaf and epileptic boxer with an enormous tongue, offers kisses for $1 at the pet adoption and information fair on Saturday at the Walmart in south Reno. With Oscar is Boxers and Buddies volunteer Tiffany Bickford.
Tribune/Nathan Orme - Oscar, a deaf and epileptic boxer with an enormous tongue, offers kisses for $1 at the pet adoption and information fair on Saturday at the Walmart in south Reno. With Oscar is Boxers and Buddies volunteer Tiffany Bickford.
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RENO — Sparks resident Melissa Reynolds went to Walmart on Saturday with her two kids to get some groceries and ended up leaving with a calico kitten.

“I definitely wasn’t planning on leaving with this little guy, but I felt like me and my kids had a connection with him,” Reynolds said. 

The Walmart on Kietzke Lane was abuzz with animal activity on Saturday for the third Karen DeSouza Memorial Super Pet Adoption and Festival.  The Nevada Humane Society, the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals of Northern Nevada and other such organizations brought available animals to the parking lot in hopes of getting more pets adopted. 

“The SPCA has had 15 adoptions so far and there have been a total of about 23 between all of the different groups,” SPCA employee Natalie Williams said.

Last year, there were 150 adoptions made at the adoption festival, but Williams expected decreased rates of adoptions this year. 

“I think part of it’s because of the economy,” Williams said.  “A lot of people have to give up their pets because they’ve moved into apartments that might not be pet friendly or they can’t afford to care for a pet.  The same reason some people are having to give up their pets is why some other people might not be adopting.” 

Cats and dogs weren’t the only pets up for adoption.

“I currently have 47 ferrets up for adoption,” said Lisa Watson with Wind and Willows Ferret Rescue. “I don’t have them on site, but I have gotten a lot of leads today.”

Cats and dogs were in shaded cages to protect against the heat, which was a concern addressed by some of the groups at the fair.

“As it begins to warm up, it’s incredibly important to keep your pet’s needs in mind,” Nevada Humane Society volunteer Raymond Borgess said.  “You have to keep in mind that what might feel warm to us might be unbearably hot for your pet that might have a thick coat.”

Another concern in the heat is what makes up the materials in dog toys and food and water bowls. 

“It’s good to check what your dog, cat or even bird’s feed and water dish is made of,” Petco employee Jared Breighton said.  “A lot of people are becoming more conscientious about the kinds of chemicals that are in their water bottles because when it gets warmer, these chemicals can seep into the water.  The same applies to your pet.”

Breighton advised Reynolds on which types of materials would be best for their new kitten, which her son Dylan said he wanted to name Hallow since his black and orange coat reminded him of Halloween. 
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