Inside Mag February 2014 : Page 17

well as visiting Petco with some of the ani-mals on adoption weekends at the store to help them connect with a forever home. Becht also takes the animals to the mega adoption events and makes it a point to educate everyone he meets on the need to adopt shelter animals and to spay or neu-ter all pets. “Our volunteers have a huge impact,” says Torpy. Also critical are the partnerships that Brevard County Animal Services and Enforcement has developed with the Central Brevard Humane Society, the SPCA of Bre-vard and the many breed rescue groups in the county. “These groups are incredible,” says Torpy. “They take a huge number of animals from us.” Brevard Lost Pets also helps by trying to reunite stray animals in the shelter with their owners. “We all work in sync to help the animals,” says Torpy. As open-admission facilities, both Animal Care Centers accept all unwanted domestic creatures, be they furry, feathered or scaly. Whenever possible, Animal Services and Enforcement staff will work with owners to help them avoid surrendering their pets. “If feeding the animals is an issue, we will try to help them with food,” says Torpy. “If the animal’s behavior is a prob-lem, we will refer them to trainers. If our officers find a stray, they will knock on doors to try and find their owners before bringing the animal into the system.” Ingenuity plays a big part in helping more animals get adopted. The Animal Care Centers’ “Pajama Pup” is a “pet test-drive” opportunity that allows families to bring a shelter dog into their home overnight. Families who are not certain a particular animal will click with them are invited to take it home for 24 hours. “You are not committed to anything beyond the over-night stay and you can take out as many dogs as you want,” said Tracey Breen, rescue coordinator at the South Animal Care Center. It was through a Pajama Pup party that former shelter dog Tina found a loving home with nine-year-old Jessica Braswell and her parents. The Satellite Beach family, who often takes shelter dogs into their home to socialize them, fell under the spell of a two-year-old terrier mix. Volunteer Edward Becht Brevard County Animal Services and Enforcement is committed to giving homeless animals the second chance they deserve. “Our goal is to get animals into homes,” says Torpy. “Every time we do that, we’re saving lives.” n BrevardCounty.us   INSIDE  n   17

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