Fifty four dogs from the United States will be looking for forever homes in the Lower Mainland this weekend.
The dogs, all from the San Francisco Bay area, are travelling 1,400 km to find new homes in Canada – at least that’s their wish – and the hope of Leslie and Ralph Fege, who run Embrace a Discarded Animal Society adoption shelter based out of Washington State.
This will be the largest ever adoption event for Embrace and the Langley PetSmart, and Fege admits she’s hopeful B.C. residents will consider adding these rescue dogs to their families.
The dogs up for adoption were rescued from overpopulated shelters and represent a large range of breeds and vary in age.
The adoption event is being held at the Langley PetSmart (20015 Langley Bypass), and the couple will be pulling in earlyFriday with their large, customized motorhome, dubbed the Rescue Express. It is outfitted specifically to transport the dogs.
The adoption event will run Friday, March 9 to Sunday, March 11, and is held in partnership with PetSmart Charities of Canada. They’ll be set up Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., and then Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
During these visits, Embrace typically receive about a hundred applications, Fege previously told the Black Press.
Dogs are never adopted “off the table,” Leslie explained, noting that any potential adopter must be screened – complete with a home visit.
“We don’t want people coming in expecting to just pick out a dog,” she said.
“The events are merely to let people meet the dogs,” Leslie added, noting they’re particular about fining the “right home for our dogs.”
She and her husband have been running frequent adoption clinics for the past year in Abbotsford, White Rock, and Langley.
In Langley, they always partner with PetSmart. To date, PetSmart’s across North America have helped find homes for 7.4 million pets since 1994.
Embrace operates out a facility that was set up across the border in Blaine about two years ago, when Fege was able to purchase a 10-acre property for pennies on the dollar compared the Lower Mainland.
Prior to that, Embrace operated primarily with foster homes. But now, Fege said, the dogs are cared for on the ranch – which has kennels and lots of room for the animals to run.
The goal of Leslie and her husband Ralph is to fill a need – to find homes for small dogs, so people weren’t going to buy from puppy mills.
While most of the dogs in care at Embrace are from California, there are some from Taiwan, and the society was expecting to take some of the dogs from overflowing shelters in the hurricane devastated Texas.