Onondaga County Shelter Pets Find Forever Homes Shelter Pets Find Forever Homes

Organizations are teaming up to fight against shelter overcrowding.

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (NCC News) – Central New York animal shelters have too many pets coming in and not enough going out. Rescue centers are now teaming up to encourage adoption and also help from shelter overcrowding.

PetSmart hosted shelters at its Erie Boulevard location to celebrate National Adoption Day. Some of the attendees were CNY SNAP and Helping Hounds, two nonprofits dedicated to saving cats and dogs, respectively.

“We want to find these animals a forever home, where they can be happy and have real connections,” said PetSmart Assistant Store Leader Derrick Fischer.

“There are so many animals without homes and these shelters are overrun, they cannot handle or do not have space for all the pets,” he said. “So that is why we do this, so we can help out the shelters and the families looking for a new member.”

CNY SNAP Adoption Coordinator Janice Venditte could not even bring all the cats she had back at her shelter because there were too many.

“We are facing a problem that every shelter in the area is facing,” she said. “We do not have enough crates or cages for these animals because more come in every day.”

But it could be worse.

“There are more than 100 cats in one small shelter in Oneida County, people don’t realize how many strays there are out there,” she said.

cat looking sad
A young cat stared at a little girl as she waved to him through the crate.
© 2020 Morgan Trau

She believes there are so many abandoned animals due to the “Irresponsibility of the owners” on not spaying or neutering their pets.

“Just don’t put them out on the street, because that’s where they are going to start reproducing and reproducing and then we have a big mess like what’s happening now,” she said. “Bring them to us.”

She came up with a solution that seems to be working for CNY SNAP.

“Well if somebody comes to us and says, ‘can you neuter our cat or spay our cat, we just don’t have the money,’ we’ll do it for them for nothing,'” she said.

And she’s made it really easy to adopt from them, too.

Dogs may be a man’s best friend, but a cat stole India Butler’s heart today. She met Bailey and just knew she had to take her home.

Woman holding cat
India Butler and her new cat Bailey shared a tender moment before Butler signed the adoption paperwork.
© 2020 Morgan Trau

“We are going to fill out the paperwork, I got a chance to hold her and see how soft and cuddly she is and she looked me right in the face and so I think she’s the one,” she said.

Bailey isn’t the only pet getting adopted today.

“In these adoption agencies, that are kinda miserable, that stinks!” said Fischer. “And we give them a great platform to have these organizations come in and find homes for all these wonderful animals and really create awesome connections.”

“It makes me so happy when they get adopted, it’s just really cool,” he added. “But all the credit goes to Janice and the guys who work the shelters, I am just a platform.”

Man with dog.
Derrick Fischer played with a dog at his store.
© 1999 Morgan Trau

If you missed this weekend but still want to adopt, CNY SNAP is always looking for forever homes for their animals.

CNY SNAP information:

Phone Number: (607) 756-2561

Facebook Page


Adoptable Cats


Helping Hounds information:

Phone Number: (315) 446-5970



Adoptable Dogs


PetSmart on Erie Boulevard information:

Phone Number: (315) 446-6320


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