Finding pets their forever homes

The co-president and associate director of veterinary services at the San Francisco SPCA, Jennifer Scarlett helps thousands of animals find homes every year.

What does the SPCA do? We’re here to serve and protect animals in San Francisco. We have a shelter and adopt out about 4,000 dogs and cats every year. We also have a clinic for subsidized care and a full-service hospital.

What animals do you see most often? It’s about two-thirds cats and one-third dogs at our facility. The main reason we have so many cats is because owners are not getting them spayed or neutered.

How do you promote adoption of animals? It’s hard, but one of the things we do is give them a full physical exam and look at their previous owner history. We do personality tests so we can match people with the animals they tell us they like. The real salesmen are the animals themselves.

Why is adoption so important? Saving the lives of animals means getting them into homes. The more cats and dogs we can find a home for, the more we can move from Animal Care and Control into our adoption facility.

Do you have pets of your own? I have a dog rescued from Hurricane Katrina and three cats.

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