GALLERY: Half of County Shelter Animals Adopted on Clear the Shelters Day

It’s a purring, tail-wagging and hippity hopping day for County shelter animals that are now settling into their new forever homes. More than half of the 134 animals available at County Animal Services’ two shelters were adopted Saturday during Clear the Shelters Day.

In all, 81 animals were adopted: 48 from the shelter in Bonita and another 33 from the shelter in Carlsbad. To be specific, that’s 33 dogs, 46 cats and two rabbits.

“Our first adopter arrived at the gates to our Bonita shelter at 5:45 in the morning. They had a specific pet in mind and wanted to ensure they had the first opportunity to adopt the animal,” said County Animal Services Director Daniel DeSousa. “Every day an animal is adopted at our shelters is a good day but Clear the Shelters Day is a truly incredible day as we know that dozens of animals that were once in our care are now in permanent, loving homes.”

Among those adopted was China Rose, a cat who came in to Animal Services at a portly 24.5 pounds and severely matted. She was shaved by the veterinary staff, put on a diet and was down to 18.5 pounds when she posed for a regal photograph. One couple couldn’t resist this big, bundle of fur and took her to a new, forever home. (You can see photos of China Rose and her new family in the gallery below.)

A border collie dog at the shelter in Bonita couldn’t get along with other dogs and had been returned once by an adopter. Rajah just hadn’t met the right dog until Saturday when he met a bigger, older Anatolian shepherd. They got along famously, and now Rajah and his new-found friend will live at a home on 80 acres.

County Animal Services waived adoption fees for all dogs, cats and rabbits. On top of that, all adopted pets were spayed or neutered, and microchipped before going home. Vaccinations were also up-to-date on dogs and cats.

Clear the Shelters is part of a campaign by NBC-owned television stations and Telemundo to find loving homes for the millions of pets who end up in the nation’s shelters each year. Cities across the country take part in the event. A dozen local shelters took part as well. The final tally for our region came to 608 animals. Across the nation, more than 76,000 pets were adopted.

For those who missed out on Clear the Shelters Day, plenty of animals are still available at the County’s shelters. If you’d like to see which ones are available, stop by the shelter or visit the adoptions page.

For more information, about County Animal Services, visit or call (619) 767-2675.

Tracy DeFore is a communications specialist with the County of San Diego Communications Office. Contact