TAMPA, Fla. — In honor of the late Betty White, the Hillsborough County Pet Resource Center will waive all fees for the first 100 dogs and cats adopted beginning Saturday, January 15.
White died on December 31, just weeks before her 100th birthday on Monday, January 17.
The shelter will be closed Sunday, January 16 and Monday, January 17, but said the adoption offer will continue until 100 pets are adopted. Animals at the shelter are microchipped, vaccinated, registered, and spayed or neutered.
"This way, we know that people maybe can’t take on a large expense of adopting right away, but with the understanding that you are going to have the animal, it is going to be an expense, but it’s one that you can maintain throughout the animal’s life while they're with you," said Lauryn Postiglione, a program coordinator for the Pet Resource Center.
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White was not only a legendary actress and comedian, but also an animal advocate. After she died, a social media movement dubbed the #BettyWhiteChallenge started to take over. It encourages people to donate to a local shelter or rescue in her name.
“We have probably over 250 dogs right now, and we have close to 200 cats," said Postiglione.
Postiglione has been at the shelter for years. She and other people at the Pet Resource Center know what it feels like to see an animal find its forever home.
"When they get comfortable and their little personalities come out and you get to see them, and then they get so excited when they get to go home with someone, it’s really great," said Postiglione.
The Pet Resource Center is not requesting money, but would gladly accept supplies pet treats, toys, and comfort items if people aren't looking to adopt but want to take part in the challenge. A list of suggested pet items can be found here.
Items can be dropped off or purchased online and mailed to the pet shelter. The shelter is located at 440 N. Falkenburg Rd., Tampa, FL 33619.