(FOX 9) - The pandemic changed the way the Animal Humane Society adopts out pets, which also changed the way people pick their new family member.
Alex Bujold and his girlfriend went to the Animal Humane Society in Golden Valley looking for a cat for a relative. They were hoping to find a furry friend that others might overlook.
"It always makes me sad when I see one that's been here for a long time, waiting for an owner to adopt it. It makes me want to adopt it, honestly," Alex said.
The AHS says it usually has only a handful of older animals who have been at one of its shelters for two weeks or more without being adopted. But now, it has two dozen "Forget-Me-Nots," as they are called, spread out across their three locations in the metro.
"A lot of the time before the pandemic, people would come in just to look, then walk out with a new pet. We're not seeing that quite as much right now," said Sarah Bhimani with AHS.
Officials at the AHS say people have to make an appointment to enter the shelter because of the pandemic. They believe potential owners are falling in love with a few pets on the organization's website and coming in to visit those specific animals instead of browsing all the dogs, cats and critters who are in need of a new home.
"We're hoping people spend some time with our ‘forget me nots.’ Don't pass them by so quickly. These adult dogs and cats have so much love to give. We want to make sure people are recognizing that and give them a chance," Bhimani said.
The AHS is looking for more people to adopt "forget me not" pets, those who have been at the shelter a longer time.
Bujold says they're considering an older cat for his girlfriend's grandfather, and that's a bit of advice other potential pet owners should remember.
"I think it’s good to keep an open mind - there might be other options for them to look at," Alex said.