By: Becca Demski
LAKELAND, FL — Due to COVID-19, the Humane Society of Tampa Bay has canceled Furry Friday with Katie Sommers. The adoption event was scheduled for June 5, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. and had anticipated to draw hundreds of people.
The official announcement of cancellation happened Wednesday, May 1, 2020, at 12:38 p.m. through the Humane Society of Tampa Bay’s event Facebook page. After continual monitoring of COVID-19’s development and taking into account factors such as potential risks to health and safety, the Humane Society of Tampa Bay chose to postpone the event to a later undisclosed date.
Furry Friday takes place quarterly, and is broadcast live with Katie Sommers, 93.3 FLZ Radio Personality, to help promote pet adoptions for $9.33. By doing so, the shelter is able to free up more space and save additional animals that come through their door.
Despite the cancellation, Sommers will continue to post weekly #FurryFriday promotional pet posts through her Instagram page, live show and other social media outlets. However, the $9.33 adoption fee is only valid on those designated dates.
Maria Matlack, Event Marketing and PR manager of the Humane Society of Tampa Bay, says that although the event is no longer happening, people are still able to come to the shelter and adopt a pet.
“The pandemic has actually increased the number of adoptions. We are very busy,” Matlack said. “But it is kitten season and we have over 400 kittens in our care that need homes.”
The Humane Society of Tampa Bay relies on grants and individual donations to help fulfill its mission to end animal homelessness and provide care and comfort for companion animals. Matlack urges potential pet parents to consider adoption because of its lifesaving impact.
In 2019, the shelter received over 4,231 owner surrenders, 3,903 strays, 1,743 local transfers and 4 wildlife into their facility. With that, 93% of the local animals found homes. Their goal for 2020 is to save and provide homes for over 9,800 animals.
For the most up to date information on the event’s cancellation or other inquiries, please visit www.humanesocietytampa.org. You can also follow the Humane Society of Tampa Bay on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.