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Starting This Weekend, San Diego County Waiving Pet Adoption Fees

Audio

Aired 4/19/09

San Diego County is waiving adoption fees at animal shelters for the first time, starting Saturday. The county says it's overwhelmed by an influx of animals, especially cats. KPBS reporter Andrew Phelps has details.

Animal services director Dawn Danielson says an average of 19 kittens are coming in every day. Baby kittens are fuzzy and cute and people scoop them up fast. But older cats are sitting un-adopted -- and none of the county's three shelters euthanize.

Danielson hopes to clear up kennel space by letting people adopt cats for free if they cats are older than six months. She says that's a new strategy.

Danielson : I've been in this business a long time, and there was always a feeling that if you didn't charge something, it devalued the animal. So we've always hesitated waiving fees. Well, recent studies have shown that that's not true. If they're going to provide a good home, they do that whether they pay for an animal or whether they don't.

Adoptions will be free for the next two weeks.

Andrew Phelps, KPBS News.

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