OCEAN CITY — If Kimora gets adopted, the pit bull-chocolate Labrador mix at the Humane Society of Ocean City will leave with a lifetime deal on medical coverage.
A new program the society announced Monday gives all adopted pets a 10 percent discount for life on veterinary services. The no-kill shelter is at capacity, and the goal is to make some room while finding some cats and dogs good homes.
“We’re pretty much operating at capacity and have been for probably three years now,” said Kevin Fischer, assistant manager of the facility on Shelter Road.
The capacity is 125 animals. But in recent years, as the economy has tanked, more animals seem to be arriving than leaving. The society has operated a shelter here since 1964, but recently opened an animal medical clinic with a full range of services. There are three veterinarians who service it. That’s what led to the discount.
“We never had the ability to do this before. We now have a full-service medical clinic. For the life of the animal, you get a 10 percent discount, over and above our already low rates,” Fischer said.
The society also plans to extend the offer to those who have previously adopted when they next come in for medical care.
About one-third of the adoptions from the shelter go to local residents while the rest of the pet owners come mostly from other towns in Cape May and Atlantic counties. The operation gets some funding from the city but is mostly fueled by donations and the clinic. There are three volunteers on staff for every paid position.
Some animals are strays picked up by Ocean City. Others are left off by owners. Kimora is a transfer from another facility who arrived with heartworm but is now cured. Dogs with pit bull in them, Fischer noted, are hard to adopt.
“She’s such a sweetheart, very well-behaved and ready to be adopted,” Fischer said.
Kimora’s new owner would get an “alumni discount card” that guarantees the 10 percent discount for the life of the dog.
“Our goal is to increase adoptions as well as make it more affordable for pet owners to give their animals the exceptional medical care they deserve, said the society’s Executive Director Bill Hollingsworth.
Fischer said making the pets “alumni” to the clinic will hopefully build up loyalty to the operation. Fischer said 40,000 animals a year in New Jersey get euthanized but this number could be cut in half if people were loyal to shelters and adopted instead of buying from pet stores.
“Anything we can do to energize people to adopt instead of buy is great. We have to do more adoptions to get more animals in. These animals, if they were in a city shelter, would be put down,” Fischer said.
To learn more
Call the shelter at 609-399-2018 or http://www.hsocnj.org/">by clicking here for a link to the society's website.
Contact Richard Degener: