Posted Jun 2, 2022, 1:25 pm
The Pima Animal Care Center is starting a new foster program that will offer $50 gift cards to people who shelter and train dogs, with the hope of freeing space in the county’s packed shelter. PACC has hundreds of dogs in need of homes.
The Finn’s Fund for Good Dogs program focuses on dogs who have been in the PACC shelter for a long time and have behavior problems. The goal is to get them trained and ready to live in a home.
Anyone who commits to foster a dog through the program, which is funded in part by the Pedigree Foundation, will receive a $50 Amazon gift card every two weeks for up to six weeks, in exchange for working with PACC to train and spread the word about the dog.
Fosters will work with professional trainers, the dog’s case manager and their shelter advocate. The training is meant to “help set (dogs) up for success in compatible homes,” Monica Dangler, director of Animal Services, said.
Some of the common behaviors that PACC dogs need training to deal with include:
- Leash reactivity (barking, pulling, etc. on leash)
- Impulse control (teaching an excitable dog how to calm themselves)
- Getting used to strangers
- Feeling comfortable alone
- Sharing (toys, treats, food, etc.)
“The community has been supportive of our foster program for a very long time,” Dangler said. “These pups need some very special lifesavers, and we know those fosters are here in this amazing community.”
As recently as last Friday, PACC issued an emergency request for community assistance after their shelter ran out of space for dogs heading into Memorial Day weekend. PACC capacity is at “extreme” as of Thursday, one level below “critical.”
For the month of April, which has the most recent data, PACC took in 1,617 cats, dogs and others, which is 143 more than April 2021. There are currently 524 dogs at the shelter in need of homes and 516 more in foster care that need adoptive homes, PACC reports.
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Anyone interested in taking part in the Finn’s Fund foster program can visit a list of shelter dogs eligible for the program and contact the dog’s advocate or case manager, whose information is listed with each dog’s profile.
Over the last year, Finn’s Fund has had an 85 percent success rate in finding permanent homes for these pets, PACC reports.
Pima Animal Care Center, 4000 N. Silverbell Rd., is open Monday to Friday, noon to 7 p.m., and 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
Every pet comes with up-to-date medical care, a microchip, current vaccinations, and a free spay or neuter surgery.
Bennito L. Kelty is TucsonSentinel.com’s IDEA reporter, focusing on Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access stories, and a Report for America corps member supported by readers like you.