Portland, Oregon -- The public's response to two huge animal rescues last week has been nothing short of overwhelming. Since the Oregon Humane Society rescued almost 200 animals last week, the shelter's storage areas have been overflowing with donated pet food while shelter staff have been working overtime to keep up with the public's demand to adopt the neglected dogs.
Soon after the rescued animals from the Harney County and Tillamook rescues were made available to the public, OHS experienced the largest adoption weekend in the history of the 141-year-old nonprofit. "The public's response was incredible. The community showed its concern and compassion for the rescued animals in our care," said Sharon Harmon, OHS executive director.
The public adopted 224 animals Dec. 11-13th, double the number usually adopted and well above the previous record of 192 pets who went home over a similar three-day period in Nov. 2007. While dozens of the rescued dogs from Harney County and Tillamook found new homes, so did 86 cats and kittens, seven rabbits, four birds and one Guinea pig. "I think people understood that our shelter was strained to capacity, and they decided this was the right time to bring a new friend into their family," said Harmon.
Not only did the public take animals home over the weekend, they dropped off a record number of donations -- so much so that OHS has asked the public to stop bringing donations of dog food, towels and shredded paper. "We are grateful for all the donations so far, as we rely entirely on private contributions for everything we do here," said Harmon. The two rescues could cost OHS, which gets no support from national humane organizations, more than $150,000.
OHS is still in need of large dog crates, dog toys, wet cat food, laundry soap, bleach and monetary donations.
As of today, more than eighty of the rescued dogs have found permanent adopted homes and another 37 are in foster homes. More than two dozen rescued dogs from Tillamook and Harney County are available for adoption today at at OHS, with more becoming be available as their medical condition permits. Pictures and profiles of rescued animals available for adoption can be found on the OHS Website.