Last week, we received the official word from the Governor that schools will remained closed for the rest of the school year. While we all knew that this was coming, it was still a sad announcement for all of us. I feel so sad for our seniors, but also so sad for our underclassmen and staff. School is home for so many of us, and the idea that we won’t be returning “home” for six months is…just sad.
In happier news, on Monday, we adopted a kitten! From a Rottweiler rescue! It was a strange and apocalyptic adoption, in a parking lot outside of a veterinarian office, with strangers hanging around in masks waiting to pick up their new pals. She is five months old, black, fuzzy, and very sweet. We’re trying out the name Roxanne (Roxy), but we’re not quite sure that it fits just yet.
Connected to my news, on April 17, 2020, Naomi Houghton published an article in The Union Leader titled,“NH Animal Shelters See A Sharp Decline in Pet Adoptions.” While
there have been many states reporting increases in pet adoptions, New Hampshire has actually seen a sharp decline in adoptions. Because shelters aren’t able to have open doors to visitors, potential adopters have to rely on photos and descriptions and commit to adopting before having a meet and greet, which has turned some off of adoptions. Many of those quoted in the article spoke to the importance of open houses, walk throughs, and meet and greets in the adoption process. One rescue organization, the NHSPCA in Stratham, have been holding virtual adoptions, but animals are being adopted out as a slower rate than usual. The good news is that many adoptable animals are in foster homes, so they aren’t in lonely cages without visitors. However, without animals at shelters, employees have been furloughed (Houghton).
It makes me sad and surprised that New Hampshire has experienced a downturn in adoptions when so many other states are publishing pictures of empty cages on social media. I do understand that people are wary of adopting based on photos and descriptions; we had these same feelings. While Roxy(?) had a cute photo and was described as being social, who know how true that would be? My husband was very hesitant to follow through with the adoption without first meeting her, which is completely understandable. I’m hopeful that we see a dramatic increase of adoptions once shelters can open to visitors, although I am nervous about the impact of cat adoptions after recent news articles about the potential for COVID-19 infection in house cats, although there is no evidence that cats can pass the virus onto owners. As I’ve said over these last weeks, I’m looking forward to this being over.
Houghton, Kimberly. “NH Animal Shelters See a Sharp Decline in Pet Adoptions.” UnionLeader.com, Union Leader Corporation, 17 Apr. 2020, http://www.unionleader.com/news/animals/nh-animal-shelters-see-a-sharp-decline-in-pet-adoptions/article_9fe2728e-bd29-5ba4-aee5-17c48ce9ec54.html.