September 12, 2019

Everybody Needs a PAL

Yes, I do think everyone needs a friend, but here I mean a PAL, as in the OHS Pet Adoption Location Program that adopts pets in the care of the OHS offsite in the community. The PAL program is an enormously important part of the OHS’s ability to help animals in Ottawa.  At any given time, there may be 80 or more cats and small animals spread out in 33 locations across the city. This considerably eases the space crunch we experience in the warmer months, and since the animals are mostly fed and cared for by PAL partner employees while they are awaiting adoption, this eases our staffing requirements as well.

It is good for adopters too, since there are so many locations, there is almost always one close by.  And the bonus is that many PAL locations have longer opening hours than the OHS adoption centre.

Most of our partners are pet supply stores of one kind or another, but a handful of veterinary clinics have also signed on. None of the three remaining pet stores selling pets from for-profit breeders are our partners, though.

For the pet stores, beyond the feel-good of helping animals, it draws in people to visit their stores that might not otherwise stop by. For all the partners, it can be a tremendous morale booster for employees who go to great lengths to help the pets in their care get adopted.

The program regularly adopts more animals than the OHS’s own adoption centre. Because it is so important, the OHS dedicates staff to the program to deliver animals, check their health regularly, to troubleshoot issues that arise and to train the employees how to complete adoptions. Our commitment is that an adoption in a PAL location will be the same as if it occurred at the OHS.

So, next time you are visiting your favourite pet supply store or veterinary clinic, watch out for the PAL logo, and thank the staff for what they do for the animals.

Bruce Roney
President and CEO

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