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9th Annual Bow-Wows & Meows Pet Fair Breaks Adoption Record
November, 2009 - Issue #61
It was a day of celebration for L.A. County Shelter animals as 157 dogs and cats went home with their new families from the 9th Annual Bow-Wows & Meows Pet Fair on Oct. 11.

An additional eight dogs were adopted from no-kill rescues that participated at the fair, resulting in a total tally of 165 pets that found their furr-ever families.

Since its inception in 2001, the non-profit Bow-Wows & Meows, Inc. has adopted out 850 animals during its annual pet fairs. The 2009 adoption number broke last year's record of 117, much to the delight of Bow-Wows & Meows founder Yvonne Allbee.

"When I saw the incredible amount of dogs and cats brought to the fair in the morning, my most fervent wish was that they would all find homes by the time we closed," Allbee said. "Almost every one of them did find a family. When we heard the number of 157 adoptions, our entire board of directors were in tears...of joy."

The festive atmosphere of the fair, which is free to the public and attracts thousands of attendees every year, is certainly an attraction. Bow-Wows & Meows featured more than 60 pet-related vendors, a DJ, tasty people food, rides for the kids, a low-cost vaccine clinic and personalized ID tags, children's bracelets, demonstrations from Dancing with the Dogs and their Famous Fun Dog Show.

"We believe that if you provide a positive adoption opportunity, the public will do the right thing and opt to adopt," Allbee said. "This year certainly proved that theory true."

Low adoption fees were another draw; just $30 for dogs and cats, including spay/neuter,
vaccinations, and microchip. The County also offered "no penalty fee" pet license renewals.
"In a tough economy, it makes sense to offer potential pet owners the best possible price to encourage shelter adoptions," Allbee said.

Since the high number of adoptions made for empty kennels at the participating shelters, many of the un-adopted animals were transferred to a location with a high adoption rate. Every year, an estimated 4-5 million dogs and cats are killed at shelters throughout the United States, a number which horrifies Allbee.

"One of the goals of Bow-Wows & Meows is to educate the public on the importance of spay and neuter programs, which have been shown to drastically reduce the number of homeless pets," Allbee said. "Of course, we also promote that people should adopt, rather than shop for a pet and provide information on puppy mills, breeders, and pet stores that support our beliefs."

For more information on Bow-Wows & Meows, visit www.bowwowsandmeows.org or call (661) 297-5961.
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