Every day, Willamette Humane Society (WHS) holds meet-and-greet appointments between pets and potential families from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Last week alone, 16 sweet pets left our care and started new lives with wonderful people.
But COVID-19 has changed the way we work. Now, more than ever before, we need your patience and kindness.
Our Adoption Processes Have Changed
Here’s how adoptions work now:
- Biographies publish online. Teams of volunteers and foster families collaborate on detailed descriptions of the dogs and cats in our care. Read them to find out if animals are right for your family.
- Questionnaires are submitted. When Cupid strikes, potential families hit the red “Ask About” button at the bottom of a biography. They fill out the information, and submit the form.
- Questionnaires are time-stamped. Each questionnaire enters a queue by submission date and time.
- Adoption staff processes each form. Close matches between what an animal needs and what a family can offer are ideal. Sometimes, there’s a clear issue (such as a family with small children hoping to adopt a dog that dislikes small people). Sometimes, a meet seems like the next best step.
- Adoption staff conducts a phone screening. We walk through the application and discuss what each animal wants and needs. If that conversation goes well, we set up an appointment.
- Animals and families come together. We reach out to our foster families, and we ask them to bring their pets to the shelter. One staffer conducts a meet-and-greet with the family and the animal, while maintaining social distancing.
- Animals head home. If it’s a match, the adoptive family leaves with its new four-legged family members. And our fosters leave with a new animal to care for. If not, fosters return home with their original foster pets.
These Steps Take Time
The response to our call for adoptions is remarkable. For example, in just one day, 60 potential pet parents sent in email messages to ask about adopting a dog or a cat. Despite the global health crisis, we are so excited to see this passion for pets and adoption.
But social distancing mandates mean we have a smaller staff available to answer each note and conduct these critical adoption discussions.
It can take us up to three business days to respond to your adoption inquiries. We know that seems like a very long time, and we wish you could walk into the shelter on your own time and adopt an animal when it’s convenient for you to do so. We hope those days will return very soon.
But in the interim, we’re so thankful for your patience. Know that we are processing adoption questionnaires in the order they are received. We are not ignoring your notes and queries.
We hope you’ll consider giving a dog or cat a perfect home. And we’re thankful for your patience and understanding as we move through COVID-19 uncertainties together.