Finding animals "forever homes" in Illinois


Multimedia Journalist - Kathryn DiGisi

MURPHYSBORO, Ill. - Illinois Governor Pat Quinn debuted his adopted dog "Rosie" over the weekend and is encouraging more people in Illinois to give a dog or cat a "forever home".

The "Comptroller's Critters Pet Adoption Program began in 2011 as an effort to get stray dogs and cats off the streets and into loving families.

Since it's creation, it has helped save more than 2,000 animals.

It certainly is not quiet inside the Humane Society of Southern Illinois, but it is a friendly place where dogs and cats are up for grabs.

"Sydney is looking for a foster home," said shelter director Lora Jackson.

Jackson says last year more than 2,100 animals came through her shelter.

"About 900 of them were either placed in other rescues, adopted from our facility or returned to their owner," said Jackson.

In more rural areas, pet over-population is even more of a problem.

Maria Gorinshteyn says she wishes every pet owner microchipped their animal.

"It would be so much easier to unite animals with their owners," said Gorinshteyn.

That way, little guys like one of the newest additions to the shelter, a Chow-St. Bernard mix, could be returned home right away.

"Every microchip has a unique ID number. And that microchip will work for the rest of the animal's life," said Gorinshteyn.

Jackson says she is happy to see the state recognizing the importance of pet adoption.

"There are so many animals out there that need the TLC that we can give them," said Jackson.

She is hoping it will help her animals find "forever homes".

The Humane Society of Southern Illinois is also looking for people who are willing to foster animals.

Many are in poor health and need a loving family to nurse them to health before making them available for adoption.

If you are interested, contact your local animal shelter.