(WDTN) – Each August, 2 NEWS takes part in an event called “Clear the Shelters.”
Animal shelters all over the Miami Valley offer adoption specials in an effort to find forever homes for their pets.
This year, because of the pandemic, Clear the Shelters has changed. Instead of taking place during one weekend, it’s a month-long event.
Some families have already taken the plunge, though.
Beth, Adam, and little Willow Preston adopted their shelter dog, Tank, from the Montgomery County Animal Resource Center at the beginning of the pandemic.
“When we bought this house, right in the middle of corona– like crazy people– he finally decided that it was time for me to get another dog,” Beth said, referring to her husband, Adam.
It wasn’t just happenstance, though.
Beth did her research, and spent weeks scouring the Animal Resource Center website for the perfect pet. Finally, she saw him.
“Tank just popped up, and we went and met him and fell absolutely in love with him,” Beth said.
The Prestons were thankful the ARC was still open, and hurried off to meet Tank.
“The adoption process really hasn’t changed,” said ARC Director, Robert Gruhl. “We have everything that we were doing pre-COVID we’re doing now, obviously on a slower scale.”
Gruhl says that slower scale means fewer people inside at one time. Just five people are allowed in, and for only five to 10 minutes for an initial visit.
Gruhl says it’s a good idea to do what Beth did, and have an idea of what animal you’re interested in.
For the Prestons, those 10 minutes told them all they needed to know.
“Willow walked into the room and Tank walked over to her and licked her all the way from her chin to her forehead,” Beth said. “And I was like, ‘Okay! This is the dog!’”
After several more visits, including one introducing Tank to their other dog, the Prestons brought their new family member home.
“We do see people come in and open their hearts and their and homes,” Gruhl said. “There’s no greater feeling than to see an animal walk out of our doors hoping that well never see them again and they’ll have a long and healthy life with that family.”
A long and healthy life is exactly what the Prestons have planned for Tank, even if it started out in the middle of a pandemic.
“He is the best dog,” Beth said. “We love him.”
The ARC says there have been fewer adoptions than usual because of the pandemic, and the director wants to encourage you to check out their available dogs online.
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