What to Know
The Aug. 19 event is the NBC 4 New York/Telemundo 47's third annual pet adoption event, a national effort to help animals find forever homes
This year's campaign has more than 80 tri-state animal shelters and rescues participating
All participating organizations will offer reduced cost or waived pet adoption fees
Thousands of dogs, cats and other animals were adopted Saturday as part of a nationwide event to Clear the Shelters, bringing smiles, hugs and lots of fur to happy families that expanded to include a pet.
In the tri-state area alone, nearly 4,000 pets were adopted Saturday and that number was expected to rise.
More than 13,000 animals nationwide found their forever homes on Saturday. This month, Clear the Shelters is responsible for more than 50,000 adoptions from more than 900 shelters.
As part of NBC 4 New York and Telemundo 47's campaign, more than 80 tri-state animal shelters and rescue groups waived or reduced adoption fees.
Lines formed outside many tri-state shelters as viewers gathered to meet the furry friends who may become family.
At the Bergen County Animal Shelter, a man who was looking for a quiet companion dog made an instant connection with a chihuahua mix who had been waiting a long time for a home. When shelter volunteers broke the news that the dog had a heart murmur, the man said that he did too. The pair was a perfect match -- to the bottom of their hearts.
From older dogs to kittens to rabbits to iguanas, the NBC- and Telemundo-owned stations' Clear the Shelters pet adoption campaign has inspired local communities to take action and open their homes to pets in need. Nearly 2,300 tri-state families have adopted a pet since 2015. More than 70,000 pet adoptions have been completed nationwide during the same time period.
“There is nothing like a child’s smile when they meet a new pet for the first time. It is a deeply moving experience. As a station, we are committed to creating even more of these special moments and that is why our news anchors, reporters and WNBC employees are so passionate about connecting homeless pets with loving homes,” said Eric Lerner, president and general manager of NBC 4 New York.
"We are excited that our Desocupar Los Albergues pet adoption drive continues to grow in popularity across the tri-state area,” added Cristina Schwarz, president and general manager of Telemundo 47. "This year, we have made it even easier for families to open their homes to a homeless pet, with more than 80 shelters and rescue organizations participating across the region."
For more local information about the campaign, tips and success stories, visit nbcnewyork.com/cleartheshelters. You can also follow the effort on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram by using the hashtags #ClearTheShelters and #LoveMyPet. To access information in Spanish, visit DesocuparLosAlbergues.com and follow #DesocuparLosAlbergues and #AmoAMiMascota. Clear the Shelters is an initiative spearheaded by NBCUniversal Owned Television Stations, a division of NBCUniversal.