This holiday season, many families living in the San Antonio area will turn to “Pets Alive! San Antonio” to adopt a pet.
The non-profit organization has served as a popular adoption destination since 2012, where thousands of families go to adopt a pet, especially during the holiday season.
Steven Silver, director of major gifts and planned giving at Pets Alive!, said he anticipates a spike in adoptions for the upcoming holiday season.
“Oh, it’s classic! I mean a puppy for Christmas, it really is typical,” Silver said. “I think we’ll see an influx of folks at our adoption centers.”
An animal advocate for over 25 years, Silver said it’s critical to protect animals who cannot protect themselves, especially during unexpected tragedies like Hurricane Harvey.
Following the hurricane in mid-August, the non-profit rescued and found homes for more than 300 pets, who otherwise would have been euthanized.
“The dogs that we rescued were the ones that were going to euthanised,” Silver said. “They needed to make room for the dogs that people owned.”
The Pets Alive! foundation was founded in 2008 by Dr. Ellen Jefferson as part of an effort to prevent animals from being euthanized in Austin shelters. The foundation was such a success that just five years later a new foundation was opened in San Antonio.
Over the past five years, the San Antonio branch of Pets Alive! has saved nearly 35,000 pets from euthanasia. In 2017, the state capital celebrated its sixth year as America’s largest no-kill city.
In an effort to accomplish the same goal in San Antonio, Pets Alive! recently drove the organization’s mobile van to the McNay Art Museum on Nov. 9.
About 100 people and dozens of dogs made the trip to enjoy music, food trucks, and the Pets Alive’s “Tail Waggin’ Mobile Adoption” van, a small kennel on wheels.
About a dozen spacious kennels are squeezed into the van where visitors had the chance to visit with adoptable pets.
Volunteer Yuki Rawson, showed off a pink-collared pup for a potential adopter. Members of the crowd who were sitting on the grass listening to music, many with dogs of their own, came over to adore the puppy and her kennel mates.
In spite of the devastation Hurricane Harvey caused, the response efforts by the the shelter are a source of pride internally. Silver and the rest of the Pets Alive! team see the silver lining.
“We received a number of grants for our efforts, and we also received quite a few donations,” Silvert said.
SA Pets Alive! journeyed back and forth from Houston to San Antonio and saved countless lives through generous donations and volunteers.
Erika Mullins, events and marketing coordinator, appreciates that the community was able to rally together during this difficult time.
“Really it was a big group effort,” Mullins said. “We’re thrilled with the way the community came behind us to support us.”
While many of the Harvey Dogs were adopted, many more still await a new home.
Those interested in pet adoption or volunteering with Pets Alive! this holiday season can visit SanAntonioPetsAlive.org.