Did you make it to the grand opening of Lifeline’s new Community Animal Center on Oct. 5? If not, Showcase Saturday, Oct. 19, is another opportunity to tour the facility and, even better, meet adoptable dogs — very adoptable dogs. This event will feature the very best of Lifeline’s foster dogs. 

These dogs have lived in foster homes long enough to reveal their true temperaments. They’ve shown they love all humans and dogs. Many live in homes with children and cats and get along with them, too. All are house- and crate-trained, and many also know basic obedience commands, even leash-walking skills. You can meet these dogs at Showcase Saturday and also speak with their foster parents. It’s a wonderful opportunity to save a life and choose a dog that’s the right fit for you. 

Fifteen of these Ready to Adopt (RTA) dogs will be on hand to win your hearts. The RTA dogs can’t usually be seen at Lifeline because they’re in foster homes. In fact, over 400 dogs are fostered all over Atlanta at any given time.  

In addition to the RTA dogs, you’ll also find dogs with blue ribbons on their cages. These dogs haven’t been in foster care but have gone out in the community on temporary “assignment.” They’ve either participated in Dog for the Day (DFTD) or Weekend Warrior (WW) adventures with members of the community. This means the volunteers know lots about these dogs — their temperaments, social skills and training. There will be signs on the doggie doors detailing their outstanding qualities and volunteers available to answer your questions.  

 Space is always at a premium at shelters. If a stray is found in Dekalb or Fulton County or a pet owner living in either county brings in an animal, Lifeline must accept them. They take in an average of 40 dogs per day, and yet their average monthly “ save” rates are 89-92 percent. Before Lifeline took over the county shelters, the euthanasia rate was extremely high. One way the organization is able to save so many animals is by finding fosters.

Think of it this way, when you adopt a shelter dog, you not only save that dog, you also make room for another. 

The new facility at 3180 Presidential Drive has room for 100 dogs and also includes an area called The Villages, a place for older dogs who need a quieter atmosphere. Nineteen 5x7 individual rooms are available for any dog needing a “space of its own” plus several bonding rooms where dogs and people can get to know one another. 

And let’s not forget the cats. There are 200 cat palaces for adoptable felines and large cat playrooms. Cats too have bonding rooms, and the cat area has large glass windows so the cats can see the great outdoors.

One side of the new building is a clinic open to pet owners in metro Atlanta. Space includes multiple surgery rooms, examining rooms, and isolation rooms with special ventilation. Three full-time vets will be available. Their services include vaccinations, spaying and neutering, and dental procedures, all at significantly reduced prices. 

Volunteers will be on hand on Oct. 19 to help you get acquainted with the Showcase and Blue Ribbon dogs and all the other fur babies. Are you ready for a new four-legged friend or do you know someone who is? Spread the word and let’s make Showcase Saturday a huge success. Wouldn’t it be marvelous if all the RTA dogs found a forever home that day?

Kathy is a Sandy Springs resident. Find her books, “Lord Banjo the Royal Pooch” and “The Ink Penn: Celebrating the Magic in the Everyday,” at the Enchanted Forest and on Amazon. Contact her at inkpenn119@gmail.com, follow her on Facebook, www.facebook.com/KathyManosPennAuthor/, and/or read her blogs at https://theinkpenn.blogspot.com.

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