Nearly 1,000 homeless pets need you to Clear the Shelters

"It's just a hugely impactful event in one very short window of time."

By Lindsey Kennett - Reporter

ROANOKE, Va. - Playful, shy, young or wise. There's a pet for everyone at the Roanoke Valley SPCA.

This weekend is your chance to adopt and make sure animal shelters across Southwest Virginia have enough space to save other strays. Saturday marks the annual Clear the Shelters campaign.

Denise Hayes, shelter's CEO, is hoping every one of the 50 cats and dogs at the shelter will find loving homes during Saturday's annual Clear the Shelters event.

"We take great care of them here at the shelter, but it's not a home. There's no bed. There's no evening snuggles watching television or any of that sort of stuff, " Hayes said.

WSLS is parterning with the Lynchburg Humane Society and the Roanoke Valley SPCA for the national Clear the Shelters campaign. Since 2015, 250,000 pets have found forever homes across the U.S.

"It's just a hugely impactful event in one very short window of time," Hayes said.

The longer pets stay in shelters, there are fewer open spots for other strays. And those animals are more likely to develop health problems including respiratory infections or behavioral issues.

This year, the Lynchburg and Roanoke shelters have reduced or waived adoption fees and VCA Valley Animal Hospital is even offering discounts for medical care.

SPCA volunteer Brandi Hilovsky loves her two rescues and knows other pet parents will too.

"Just constant companionship. I mean, they're always there. I walk through the door, they're always excited to see me. So, that's always fun," Hilovsky said.

Last year, 35 pets were adopted at the Roanoke Valley SPCA. This year, Hayes is hoping for even more.

"If we could empty out the shelters over the weekend we could have a great opportunity to truly save the lives of other dogs and cats in need," Hayes said.

The Roanoke Valley SPCA is open Saturday from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. The Lynchburg Humane Society opens at 10 a.m.

If you're considering adopting an animal, here's what you need to know.

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