Woof, meow! Black Friday deal sparks run on pet adoptions

Posted by Big Rat on Campus on Nov 28, 2014 in Rat Answers | Subscribe

— Black Friday can mean more than just a chance to get the latest gadget or trendy toy at a discount price. For nearly 100 lucky dogs and cats, it meant a second chance at a good home.

The Humane Society of Tampa Bay offered a “door buster” deal on Friday: 75 percent off the discount fee for anyone who arrived seeking to adopt a pet from noon to 2 p.m. Friday.

The offer proved irresistible for animal lovers.

By 6:30 a.m., people began lining up with lawn chairs and blankets outside the Humane Society’s Armenia Avenue building. Twenty people were in line by 9 a.m., even though the office didn’t open until noon, said Carie Peterson, adoption manager for the Humane Society of Tampa Bay.

The office honored the deal for anyone who was in line during the two-hour window, even though processing the paperwork for all the soon-to-be-pet-owners took much longer.

By the time the Humane Society closed at 7 p.m., 82 pets had been adopted, including puppies, dogs, kittens, cats, a ferret and a guinea pig. Four dogs were adopted but had to first be placed in a foster program, Peterson said.

“All these animals are going to wonderful homes,” Peterson said, “I can’t express how happy I am.”

The Humane Society normally adopts 70 to 75 pets on a good weekend, which includes Friday, Saturday and Sunday, said Nash McCutchen, the agency’s marketing coordinator.

A puppy or small adult dog typically has an adoption fee of $150, but on Friday, the cost was $37.50. The cost of adopting a kitten dropped from the typical $50 to $12.50; an adult cat was only $7.50. Other pets were even more inexpensive: $6.25 to adopt a rabbit, $3.75 for a guinea pig, a mere $2.50 for rats, gerbils or hamsters.

“The price drove it,” Peterson said. “Black Fridays are usually busy, but not to this extreme. I really believe it was our special.”

To help deal with the heavy demand, the Humane Society gave tickets to the people seeking to adopt a pet between 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. If they wanted to return at another time on Friday, they could still purchase a pet with the 75 percent discount as long as they presented the ticket.

This was the first time the Humane Society of Tampa Bay has offered such a steep percent discount, though they have tried other marketing campaigns on Black Friday, such as marking down the adoption fee for pets with a black coat, McCutchen said.

“I definitely think we’re going to do it next year,” Peterson said.


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