As much as the COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on every facet of society in Vancouver, it has also driven people in self-isolation to adopt canine companions.
SPCA shelters in Vancouver have seen a formidable increase in online dog adoption applications, general manager Lorie Chortyk told Vancouver Is Awesome.
“We’ve not only seen an increase in applications but the number of applications we’re getting per animal,” Chortyk said. “Sometimes it's 200 people who apply for one dog.”
The increase was first noticeable in mid-March when the pandemic was declared and SPCA adoption processes had to convert to online applications.
“We’ve seen strong interest throughout the pandemic though especially in the early months when people were much more isolated at home,” the manager explained.
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As of Friday, Vancouver’s main SPCA branch at 1205 East 7 Ave., had no dogs currently listed up for adoption on the SPCA website.
This, due to the bevy of applications that SPCA staff go through. When one dog is adopted, the others who have applied to rehome the animal go on a waitlist.
“SPCA staff notifies those people first to be fair to people who have already applied,” Chortyk said.
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For those still interested in adopting an SPCA animal, Chortyk assured that the animal welfare organization gets new dogs and puppies brought to their shelters every day.
“There still are so many homeless animals in British Columbia that people wouldn’t or couldn’t look after.”
“Be patient,” Chortyk encouraged. On its website, there is a portal where prospective dog owners can fill out the type of breed they are looking for in a dog and the shelter location.
From that, users will receive email alerts of dogs that come into to SPCA shelters matching their desired companion.
At any given time in the province, Chortyk said the BC SPCA has about 1,000 animals – mostly dogs and cats – in its 37 shelters.