Empty animal kennels at animal shelter a welcome sight amid COVID-19 pandemic

(Riverside County Animal Services)

Some PAW-sitive news to report. Staff at the Riverside County Animal Services adoption center gleefully showed off their empty facility -- a welcome sight amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Empty kennels meant that these adoptable animals found a foster family that took them in during a time of uncertainty.

"The community has come forward to our plea to help us adopt and foster animals. And right now at our facility, we have no animals for adoption," said Animal Services Director Julie Bank in a video posted to the Riverside County Animal Services Facebook page.

"This is incredible: we cleared the adoptable animals!" the post begins.

"Right now you have met our pleas and we are so, so very thankful to all of you for doing right by our community animals," said Bank.

But despite the empty kennels, Bank said Animal Services is continuing to provide support for families to take care of their pets and newly fostered furry friends.

"We are still putting out a plea to everyone to please let us help you keep animals in your home rather than bringing them into the shelter," said Bank.

Animal Services closed its shelters to the public on April 2 due to the ongoing pandemic.

“Although the shelters are closed to the public, we’re still at the shelter caring and providing for the animals and our animal control officers are in the field protecting our constituents and animals,” Bank said. “We have already been successful in placing more than 1,660 animals in March and we are still coordinating adoptions, fostering and pet reunions, but these services will have a unique look.”

Would-be adopters and fosters search online for a pet and team members will coordinate a curbside pickup or schedule a delivery to the adopter's home if possible, according to Bank.

Anyone interested in adopting or fostering an animal from the Riverside County animal shelter can visit https://www.rcdas.org to view all available animals and email shelterinfo@rivco.org is there's one you're interested in adopting. Include the animal ID number and your contact information.

Additionally, a foster application can be found here: https://www.rcdas.org/index.php/volunteer/foster-care.