Clear The Shelters Adoption

TAVARES – The Lake County Animal Shelter is making a big push in August to find homes for the animals now housed at their shelter, as they host the special Clear The Shelters adoption program throughout the month.

Starting on Monday, the shelter is teaming up with NBCUniversal Local for this pet adoption campaign that runs through Aug. 31. For the pet-loving public, this partnership offers fee-waived pet adoptions throughout the campaign. The Lake County Animal Shelter is at 12280 County Road 448 in Tavares.

What to Expect from Clear The Shelters in August

As the shelter noted in a news release, “Residents and visitors who are interested in our wonderful pets are encouraged to make an appointment online by visiting this link.”

Walk-ins are also welcome, and every adoption will include:

  • Spay or neuter services
  • Initial vaccinations
  • Microchips
  • Personalized ID tags
  • and, as the shelter noted, “a lifetime of love.”

“We have so many great pets waiting for homes,” said Whitney Boylston, director of the Lake County Animal Shelter. “We are always excited to participate in this national adoption campaign. Last year we celebrated 428 adoptions during the event and look forward to finding loving homes for as many homeless pets as possible this year.”

So far in 2022, the Lake County Animal Shelter has experienced a 17% increase in year-to-date admissions compared to 2021, which they said is an industry wide trend. In Lake County, this has led to more than 3,500 pet adoptions so far this year.

By participating in the Clear the Shelters adoption campaign the shelter hopes to “continue the momentum of positive outcomes throughout the summer, which is the busiest time of the year.”

The shelter is also encouraging residents who are not able to adopt pets to help out in numerous ways, including by:

  • Spreading the word
  • Fostering a pet temporarily
  • or donating supplies from the shelter’s Amazon wish list:

What’s New at the Lake County Animal Shelter?

In January 2019, Lake County’ broke ground on a larger and far more high tech shelter than the one that had been hosting stray animals for decades.

The Lake County Animal Shelter built this new shelter to have the space needed to temporarily house hundreds of dogs, cats and other pets as they wait for adoption, and the building doubled the size of the older building to 31,000 square feet.

The older shelter was built in 1994, but that 13,000 square foot facility was too small and frequently struggled with overcrowding issues, while also suffering from faulty air conditioning problems.

In response, the Lake County Commission voted to approve the construction of a new animal shelter, financed by a one-cent sales tax that voters reauthorized in 2015. The commission also made the need for a new shelter more urgent by adopting a no-kill policy for Lake County, meaning animals are only to be euthanized if they’re too sick or too aggressive to be adopted.

Instead, the county has pushed for a strong adoption program to find homes for stray cats and dogs, and the shelter has responded with special adoption programs throughout the year, including their ongoing Caturday special adoptions.

Officials at the animal shelter say the no-kill policy has been working, and the county has placed more than 3,700 pets in recent years.

Michael Freeman is an Orlando journalist, playwright and author of the book “Of Cats And Wolves.” Contact him at

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