By Janet McAfee

Our two Coachella Valley public shelters are participating in the “Clear the Shelters” event, an adoption promotion sponsored by NBC4 Southern California and Telemundo 52.  On Saturday, August 15, The Palm Springs Animal Shelter and the Coachella Valley Animal Campus join 50 other animal shelters throughout Southern California on a national day of action to empty their kennels and place their animals in loving homes.

On Saturday, August 15, these shelters offer dramatically reduced adoption rates of $20 for cats and dogs.  Local sponsor VCA Animal Hospitals will have their healthcare teams on site, and adopted animals will receive a limited health exam and a gift bag filled with pet essentials.  Television anchors and reporters will visit select shelters to celebrate adoptions with photo opportunities and a live stream at

The Palm Springs shelter and the Coachella Valley Animal Campus (Riverside county shelter) are the only two open-admission public shelters in our Valley.  They MUST take in all stray animals, owner relinquished pets, and all abandoned cats and dogs.  The hot summer months create a crisis for our shelter animals because there are fewer adopters in town.   The Palm Springs Animal Shelter, which operates under a no-kill philosophy, “is at a critical limit,” according to Shelter Director Dr. Shayda Ahkami, “Both of our local shelters are full, and need all the help we can to get these pets into homes.”

Clear shelters_081315Riverside County Animal Services Director Robert Miller reports, “This is a great event that we’re very proud to be a part of, and we can’t wait to see more of our animals find their way into loving families.”

You can post photos of your newly adopted pet on social media using the hashtag #CleartheShelters.  Happy adoption photos will post on photo galleries at and  For additional information go to

Rescue animals give so much back so much to us humans.  These joyful, grateful creatures shower us with unconditional love.  They have the wisdom that comes from overcoming a rough start, and live happily in the moment when given that second chance.  Don’t be “dogless in the desert” any longer.  A cat might be the “purrfect” companion for a busy lifestyle.

The Palm Springs Animal Shelter is located at 4575 E. Mesquite, Palm Springs.  You can contact them at (760) 416-5718.  The Coachella Valley Animal Campus is located at 72-050 Pet Land Place, Thousand Palms.  Their phone number is (760) 343-3644.  CVAC’s adoption fee will be lowered to $6 in a nod to the NBC affiliate station in Palm Desert, KMIR News Channel 6.  Both these shelters have attractive, modern buildings, and their helpful employees can assist you select a new best friend.

Reduced adoption fees and extensive media coverage will give thousands of homeless animals a second chance for a new life on ‘Clear the Shelters’ day.