Philadelphia Animal Shelters Are Looking For Foster Families, Adopters And Volunteers


PAWS is the city’s largest rescue center and offers adoptions and placements for cats and dogs, as well as the occasional small animal, like guinea pigs.

PAWS Adoption Center at 2nd and Arch Streets in Philadelphia. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

Like many other relief organizations, they operate with the support of volunteers.

The volunteers “really help to ensure that the animals, while they are with us, can get all the enrichment, love and attention they could possibly need while they wait for their forever home” , said Lamond, who started as a volunteer herself, more than 14 years ago.

it’s the same for Street Tails Animal Rescue at Northern Libertiesa center focused on dogs with medical cases, which are often more likely to come out of shelters.

Street Tails Rescue between 2nd and American streets in Philadelphia. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

The small, two-person non-profit organization needs outside help to care for the dogs it rescues, and it lacks the necessary assistance.

“We really rely on our volunteers to spend quality time with the dogs and play with them and really engage their brains,” said Violet Chirpas, adoption and volunteer coordinator at Street Tails, who, like PAWS’ Lamond, has also started as a volunteer before becoming a staff member.

Violet Chirpas, Adoption and Volunteer Coordinator at Street Tails Rescue, with pit-mix Destiny, a cute girl who will soon be available for adoption through Street Tails Rescue in Philadelphia. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

Those interested in volunteering can sign up for a shift of at least one hour online – they can spend that time walking dogs or cuddling them. Cleaning and organizing are less fun, but are equally essential. Everything that is done makes a big difference, says Chirpas.

Street Tails typically houses nine dogs at a time. At the moment they have four including Leo – a big, tanned, excited mixed breed dog who is a “certified” VGB – a very good boy. And Destiny, a sweet mix of white and chocolate pit bull who is currently healing after being attacked.

Handsome Leo is a greedy mix available for adoption through Street Tails Rescue at Northern Liberties. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

Both are available for adoption, along with Kermit, a Chihuahua, and Chico, a terrier/pitbull mix.

“Having a pet is life-changing,” said Chirpas, who adopted Ellie, a Yorkie-mix from Street Tails. “I think having a dog is a lot of support for you in so many ways, and taking care of other things really makes you a better person… But also dogs are just awesome,” she said. said with a smile.

Pit-mix Destiny gets some much-needed love on a short stroll around Northern Liberties in Philadelphia. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

Those who want to support Philadelphia’s furry friends but are not yet in a position to fully commit to adopting a pet can apply to adopt a dog – it helps them get set up with a good routine and succeed in their “always-at-home.” Adopted animals also go through a probationary period in foster care to ensure the match “feels good,” Chirpas says.

For those who don’t have time to volunteer, but still want to help, both shelters accept items like cleaning supplies, blankets and food, as well as donations to support their work.

Musical Juniper Breeze performs on the ground at the PAWS Adoption Center in Old City Philadelphia. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

But of course, the ultimate goal is to bring these loving animals into homes that will care for them and show them love for the rest of their lives.

“There are always animals waiting in the shelter,” said Lamond of PAWS. “I promise you they will be a perfect pet for you and ready to come home with you, either temporarily or hopefully for the rest of their lives.”


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