It’s time to meet your new best friend

By: Victoria Mitchell | Royal Oak Review | Published September 12, 2017

 Pet Adoption Alternative of Warren volunteer Nancy Gindlesperger plays with shelter cat Wade Wilson during the 2016 Meet Your Best Friend at the Zoo fall adoption event. The happening will take place again this Friday and Saturday.

Pet Adoption Alternative of Warren volunteer Nancy Gindlesperger plays with shelter cat Wade Wilson during the 2016 Meet Your Best Friend at the Zoo fall adoption event. The happening will take place again this Friday and Saturday.

File photo by Sean Work

ROYAL OAK — Furry friends looking for a place to call home will be visiting the Detroit Zoo this weekend during one of the largest off-site adoption events open to the public.

The fall edition of Meet Your Best Friend at the Zoo will take place from noon to 6 p.m. Friday, Sept. 15, and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 16, in the small parking lot under the landmark water tower at the northwest corner of Woodward Avenue and 10 Mile Road.

Event organizers said hundreds of dogs, puppies, cats and kittens will be available for immediate adoption to qualified families.

Entry into the event is free,  and organizers said they expect more than 40 animal welfare organizations to be on-site with their friends.

“This is our 25th year, and we hope to surpass 25,000 animal adoptions in just a few weeks,” said Detroit Zoological Society Communications Manager Jennie Miller. “It’s an astounding number and one we’re very proud of.”

The Detroit Zoo hosts the semiannual event in partnership with the Michigan Humane Society. Organizers said some of the animal groups are more breed-specific rescues, while others carry a variety of cats and dogs.

Adoption fees and policies are set by each participating group, and adopters must present a valid driver’s license or state ID card.

Another aspect of the event, organizers said, is giving shelters that don’t necessarily see a lot of foot traffic, and rescue groups without brick-and-mortar buildings, a chance to showcase all of their animals for a large audience of people looking to adopt.

Organizers said it is nice to be able to host the event over two days to give potential adopters the opportunity to think about their new family addition.

For health and safety reasons, no existing pets are allowed to accompany their owners. Strollers will not be allowed in the tents and must be parked outside before entering.

Organizers hope many happy matches will be made during the fall happening.

“As there continues to be animals in need of adoption, we’re thrilled to be able to bring together animal lovers in search of furry friends and rescue organizations with animals in need of a loving home,” Miller said. “This event goes hand-in-hand with our mission — to celebrate animals, save animals and encourage respect and compassion for all living things.”

For more information, visit detroitzoo.org/events/zoo-events.