What Valentine's Day gift could be better than unconditional love? That's precisely what you get when you adopt a dog or cat, said Bobbie Burbridge Lane, The Burbridge Foundation's chairman of the board.
The love of an animal is priceless, she says, and Lane hopes to spread that unconditional love this Valentine's Day as the foundation sponsors “My Furry Valentine,” starting at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Central Oklahoma Humane Society, 7500 N Western. Cats will also be available for free adoption at PetSmart stores in Edmond and on Interstate 240.
For the event, more than 100 dogs and cats can be adopted free of charge. These animals, without the efforts of generous donors and the Central Oklahoma Humane Society, would likely have already been euthanized.
In Oklahoma each year, more than 100,000 adoptable animals are euthanized, according to the Oklahoma Veterinary Medical Association.
“Two unaltered cats and their offspring can produce 420,000 more cats in seven years. Two unaltered dogs and their offspring can produce 67,000 more dogs in six years,” the association states on okvma.org.
If the number of animals euthanized could be reduced by half, it would save county and municipal governments approximately $2.5 million per year, the association states.
Lane and many other Oklahomans hope that one day, Oklahoma will be a “no-kill” state.
Until then, Central OK Humane is working toward a no-kill community, one step at a time. The group has saved the lives of more than 70,000 animals since its founding in 2007, said Amy Shrodes, director of marketing and developing at Central OK Humane Society.
A grassroots organization, the society operates solely from donations, grants and requests. More foster families and volunteers are always needed, she said.
A gift that gives back
Lane said she hopes people will consider adopting pets for their children for Valentine's Day, as they are excellent teachers of patience, kindness and unconditional love. She also said the lives of many elderly people could be improved by the companionship of a dog or cat. Many retirement centers and assisted living centers allow pets.
At the adoption center are a wide variety of small and large breed puppies and adult dogs and kittens and adult cats. Only cats will be at PetSmart stores.