Adopting a pet for Christmas

Published 10:32 am Saturday, December 16, 2023

Christmas may come early for a few lucky dogs at the Chattahoochee Humane Society at an adoption event at the Petco in Opelika this weekend. Volunteer Dale Frazer said she hopes to see many pets find their forever home on Saturday.

The humane society is once again well overcapacity even after opening 15 outdoor kennels on the hill this fall. More than 35 dogs are at the shelter right now, which is only equipped with 16 indoor kennels and 15 outdoor kennels. 

As Christmas approaches, the shelter staff are hopeful for some miracle adoptions. Still, Frazer said, “Don’t shop.” She encouraged people to come out and meet some of the dogs in need of a home. 

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That being said, Frazer said she encourages families to research the responsibilities of a pet before making the commitment.

“A pet is a lifetime commitment,” she said. 

Many times, pets are adopted out of the shelter as Christmas gifts but as they get bigger, they end up back in the shelter. Frazer said the shelter staff encourages families to foster a dog, take a dog home for the weekend or bring their current pets for a meet and greet at the shelter before making a decision. 

“Make sure it’s a good fit for the house,” she said. “Every dog is not a good fit for a house.”

With so many dogs in the shelter, the humane society has reduced its adoption fee for some dogs to $50. Other pet adoptions have been sponsored by people in the community.

“All you have to do is come down to the shelter and sign the adoption papers,” she said. 

Frazer said the shelter is a revolving door. Even as they get a handful of dogs in foster or adoption homes, even more are brought in by animal control. 

“Until we get a spay-neuter law, it’s just always going to be like this,” Frazer said. 

All the dogs at the shelter must be spayed or neutered before they can be adopted, except for puppies. Frazer said they have gotten 16 dogs spayed or neutered in the past few days. 

Frazer said the shelter also has programs for helping keep pets in their homes. The shelter staff can provide pet food for owners who can’t afford it. They can also help with getting reduced spay/neuter pricing for county residents with a certain income bracket. 

There is one set of puppies at the shelter right now. Frazer said the last set of puppies was born in the shelter of April 11. The last of the litter was just adopted on Wednesday from his foster parent.