Your Next Adoption Story
Each week, my fellow Mayor’s Alliance staff members and I spend a morning walking dogs at the Animal Care & Control of NYC (AC&C) shelter on 110th Street. We began this last year when deep budget cuts by the NYC Department of Health left the City-funded AC&C shelters in dire need of assistance.
These weekly shifts offer us an opportunity to meet many of the dogs that come through the shelters’ doors—dogs who have run away or been lost, abandoned by their [guardians], surrendered because of financial hardship, eviction, or other personal crises, or turned into the shelter when their [guardian] died.
Every dog and cat who ends up at the shelter has a story to tell. Sometimes their story is written on their face—others are narrated by their physical appearance—and some tragic stories are disguised by valiant expressions of hope you can see in their eyes.
Each time I take a dog out of his cage, I begin to imagine what that story might be. Like, Anton, the 5-year-old Pit mix who was seized by the NYPD. Or June, the 3-year-old Brussels Griffon, who was brought in as a stray. Or Haley, the 8-year-old Lhasa Apso, surrendered by her owners when they lost their home.
More intriguing to me than their backstories, however, are the possibilities and the promise that each dog embodies. As a potential adopter, I can’t help but ask myself: What journeys would Shamu, the 4-year-old Pom, take me on? What life lessons would I learn from Juliette, the 2-year-old Miniature Poodle? How might Rose, the 15-year-old Terrier mix, change my life? Or more important, how might I change hers?
The fact is, I—and every other potential adopter—will never know how the story turns out until we take that next step and adopt. Visit an AC&C shelter today, and meet the dog or cat just waiting for you to change his life. Shelter locations and hours are available at NYCACC.org. Or visit AnimalAllianceNYC.org, where you can access more than 150 shelters and rescue groups in the NYC area, including breed-specific rescues, and also read about our upcoming three-day Mega Match Adoption Event beginning March 30.
Today, give a story a happy ending: Adopt.
Steve Gruber—Director of Communications
Mayor’s Alliance for NYC’s Animals