By Laura Michell
Shelters across Melbourne are reporting a surge in pet adoptions during lockdown, but are warning potential pet owners to remember that their pet will be part of their family long after lockdown has ended.
Thomastown’s Hegarty family are among those who decided to adopt a pet during lockdown, recently adopting a cat named Queenie from a shelter in Echuca.
Mum, Melody, said she was planning to adopt a cat for her daughter Lyrix’s 5th birthday in February but decided to adopt one sooner because of lockdown.
“We thought it was a good time for Lyrix to spend the time properly at home learning how to look after Queenie without the distraction of having plans and heading out of the house and leaving Queenie at home,” she said.
The Lost Dogs’ Home recorded 566 adoptions in May – its largest single-month adoption total since January 2018 – while 453 animals were adopted in June and 371 in July.
Spokeswoman Suzana Talevski said the organisation encouraged would-be adopters to make careful choices when adopting pets to ensure they stayed with their family for the long-term.
She said The Lost Dogs’ Home asked potential adopters to consider their living environment, lifestyle and those that already exist in their household when deciding whether to adopt a cat or dog and make a responsible decision for all parties involved.
“Our shelter staff work tirelessly to prepare our beautiful animals for adoption. When our four-legged visitors leave us we want to make sure it’s for the first and last time,” she said.