Find “the one” to be your new valentine

Whether it’s falling in love, landing the best job ever, or finding your dream home, you just know when it’s right. The same is true for finding the dog or cat who changes your life forever.

This Valentine’s Day season, national animal welfare organization Best Friends Animal Society and animal rescue groups and shelters across the country will encourage families to bypass pet stores and online pet retailers to adopt “The One” they’re looking for at their local animal shelter or with a rescue group. ACTion Programs for Animals (APA) is a Best Friends Animal Society Network partner, and they rescue Doña Ana County (DAC) shelter animals via their Doña Ana Pets Alive (DAPA!) campaign. For their The One”promotion, they are offering all of their adoptable animals for the low adoption fee of $14 from February 1 thru the 14.

Elizabeth Oreck, national manager for Best Friends Animal Society’s puppy mill initiatives, says that contrary to what many people have been led to believe, fancy papers and expensive price tags don’t make for great pets. The right cats or dogs which match your family do.

“Right now, we have amazing pets, including puppies, kittens, purebreds and mixed breeds of all types in shelters all over the country just waiting to be adopted,” Oreck said. “And for the amazing adoption fee of just $14, we hope people will reconsider adoption before purchasing a pet.”

Oreck points out that most people aren’t aware that nearly all pet stores and online sellers in the US are supplied by the 10,000 or so puppy and kitten mills, large commercial breeding operations. The same is true of online suppliers.

“So, if you’re looking for a healthy and loving new dog, cat, puppy, or kitten, your local animal rescue groups, such as APA, are the places to go,” said Oreck.

Best Friends and APA/DAPA! remind those who want purebred dogs that nearly 25 percent of pets in shelters are purebreds and there are breed-specific rescue groups, too. That makes it possible to find nearly any type of pet can be found through a shelter or rescue group, leaving no reason to turn to puppy mill-supplied retailers.

And by simply choosing to adopt, rather than purchase, people can save the lives of shelter pets in danger of being killed simply because they are homeless.

“If you’re looking for a pet, skip the pet store and adopt The One who’s right for you,” reminds Michel Meuiner, APA’s director. “If you don’t find the furry love of your life at APA, there are many other wonderful local organizations as well as the shelter where you can find your match. Adopting locally is also a great way to support our community’s No Kill efforts.”

Details about APA/DAPA!’s adoption opportunities during this timeframe are as follows:

• APA Furrever Home Adoption and Education Center, 800 W. Picacho Ave. Open Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday from 12 to 5 p.m. (and by appointment in the evenings by leaving a voice/text message at the info line: 644-0505).

• Sunday off-site adoptions in February are at PetSmart from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. (except the last Sunday of the month)

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