The Montclair Township Animal Shelter (MTAS) will join shelters across the country in a nationwide effort to place homeless pets in forever homes. Dubbing the local adoption event as “Black is the New Orange,” the Montclair shelter aspires to break its animal “inmates” out of their cages, into the homes of loving adopters.
And the adopter pays no fees.
Hundreds of shelters will lower or waive fees to encourage the adoption of animals in need during the August 15 “Clear the Shelters” event, organized in partnership with NBC-owned television stations and Telemundo Station Group. NBC 4 New York and Telmundo 47 are working with shelters in the tri-state area to find permanent homes for all shelter animals.
Montclair’s shelter will waive its adoption fees for the entire weekend of August 14-16, two days more than the nationwide effort. The shelter asks those who are able to provide a $5 donation to help cover some expenses.
“We chose to use ‘Black Is The New Orange’ as a fun vehicle to draw attention to ‘Clear The Shelters,’” said MTAS Kennel Attendant Chris Morello who is spearheading the effort. “The aim is to cast an uplifting light on a subject that is generally viewed to be very sad, when really, coming to the shelter provides the best chance these animals have for a new life. It gives us the opportunity to connect them with a forever home with a loving family,” he said.
The campaign uses posters, postcards, window panels and print ads to spread the word not only throughout all the towns the shelter services – Montclair, Verona and Nutley – but also to other neighboring municipalities.
“Although campaign materials feature several cats dressed up in prison garb expressing a desire to ‘break out,’ dog adoptions are included in the event,” said Morello.
Because a large turnout is anticipated, visiting hours will be extended – the shelter will be open from 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on the three event days and it will be well staffed with junior and senior volunteers on hand to process adoption applications immediately.
To adopt a pet, applicants must provide a personal reference, a veterinarian reference if they own another pet, and either proof of home ownership or documentation of the landlord’s pet policy, such as a signed lease, showing pets are permitted. Potential adopters are encouraged to bring all members of the household, including children, to the shelter to choose the new family member.
MTAS Volunteer Coordinator Karen Shinevar has high hopes in particular for the shelter’s older residents.
“The kittens and puppies seem to go very quickly but the older animals are often passed over,” said Shinevar. “We want people to also meet the older pets who offer benefits the younger ones don’t. Older animals are already house or litter box trained which saves the adopter a lot of work. But most of all you can see their already defined personalities.”
Shinevar says some of the older animals are very interactive and want lots of attention while others are happy just curling up next to their humans. “With older pets, you can choose one that fits your lifestyle,” she said.
The Montclair Township Animal Shelter is located at 77 North Willow Street, Montclair, NJ. The Shelter opens at 12:00 noon seven days a week, closing at 4:00 p.m. every day except Tuesday and Wednesday, when it closes at 6:00 p.m.
For more information, please contact Montclair Animal Shelter Director Nicole Dawson or Kennel Attendant Chris Morello at 973-744-8600.
MTAS hours: M, Th, F, Sa, Su: 12:00 noon to 4:00 p.m.
Tu, W: 12:00 noon to 6:00 p.m.
Ricardo Joachim, Rosalita Towanda, and Lola, Just Lola, are a part of the herd at Black Tie and Flip Flops. All their were considered “mature” and found their person at the Montclair Township Animal Shelter.