GRAND RAPIDS — As people remain home for the next few weeks, it might seem like the perfect time to adopt a pet and get them acclimated to a new house.
However, several aspects of the adoption process, like spaying and neutering the animal, have not been deemed essential, which means it is taking longer for animals to get into loving homes.
Fortunately, Hearts of Hope Dog Rescue in Grand Rapids said they had an overwhelming response to foster dogs as the pandemic entered its first few days. That helped to prevent dogs from being kenneled as the shelters were forced to cut back on staff and volunteers.
Hearts of Hope placed more than 70 dogs in foster homes, with several more being brought in over the last month.
While Hearts of Hope is accepting adoption applications, they have to resort to a virtual vetting process until the stay-at-home order is lifted and they can resume in-person visits.
"We probably have 20 dogs that are pending adoption," said Janelle McFarland, Director of Hearts of Hope. "It's hard because I never want to stop. I just want to keep helping more dogs."