DC’s Humane Rescue Alliance is waiving adoption fees for “larger” dogs—those over 40 pounds—through Sunday, May 9th. Typical fees are anywhere from $150 to $250, but HRA currently has over 50 dogs that they’re trying to place in homes as quickly as possible.
Ashley Valm, director of adoptions at HRA, says an increased intake of large dogs has coincided with a decrease in adoption interest. It’s a trend that she says may be related to loosening COVID-19 restrictions across the country.
“We have lots of big beautiful dogs waiting to find their home,” Valm says. HRA’s traditional adoption centers are currently closed because of the pandemic, so those looking to adopt can do so virtually. On its website, potential adopters can browse available animals and set up a virtual meet and greet. They can also attend virtual counseling sessions with HRA staff to review information about individual pets and ask questions. If the counseling goes well, HRA asks that adopters be prepared to bring home their pet within 24 to 48 hours.
“People sometimes can be hesitant to adopt a large dog, particularly if they live in a smaller house or an apartment.” She owns three dogs herself, including two large ones. “Those large dogs just really want a couple of good walks a day, maybe some tug, and then otherwise really want to hang out on a couch with you. They don’t need a lot of space to be a great companion.” And for those unable to give a forever home to a new dog, HRA is also looking for new foster homes for its pets, which can be a short-term commitment.
Here are some of the many dogs up for adoption this weekend: