PHOTOS: San Diego County celebrates ‘Clear the Shelters’ event

SAN DIEGO — A dozen San Diego County animal shelters and animal rescue centers will partner with local media Saturday for the fourth annual Clear the Shelters event.

Clear the Shelters is a nationwide animal adoption event designed to help as many shelter animals as possible find their forever home. Animals adopted at county facilities during the event, which will run from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., will have their adoption fees waived and will be spayed or neutered and microchipped. Cats and dogs will also be brought up-to-date on vaccinations.

“We do our best to care for the animals,” said County Animals Services Director Daniel DeSousa. “We provide for all their needs and then some, but a shelter is no substitute for a loving, forever home.”

Residents wishing to adopt a pet during the event can speed up the process by filling out an online adoption application ahead of time, county officials say, because adoptions can take multiple hours, not including time spent in line. Renters are advised to bring a copy of their lease to confirm they can have a pet in their home.

County residents adopted 739 animals during the event in 2017, according to county officials. More than 53,000 pets were adopted during the nationwide event in 2017. More than 100 animals are currently available at the county’s two facilities in Bonita and Carlsbad.