Animal adoption still being pushed during pandemic

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HASTINGS, Neb. (KSNB) - Heartland Pet Connection in Hastings is continuing to push for adoptions during the Coronavirus pandemic. The animal shelter has two main priorities at this point: protect its staff and volunteers and keep the animals safe.

Heartland Pet Connection is still holding normal hours in order to get pets adopted, but has made a few changes in to its operation.

"We're trying to protect our volunteers and our staff so they can continue to care for the pets as best as they can," Jennie Theesen of Heartland Pet Connection said.

The staff is still urging people to consider adoption because the animals aren't going anywhere and if something were to happen to the staff the animals would be left care-less.

"It's definitely slowed down a lot of traffic as far as people coming in to look and visit," Theesen said. "I think people are definitely a lot more cautious, which we greatly appreciate at this time, however we do want to encourage people to continue to consider adoption."

Theesen encourages people to stay home if they have recently traveled or been sick, or to send a friend or relative to do any animal meet-and-greets, which are still taking place.

She also encourages people to utilize Heartland Pet Connection's website which is being kept up-to-date and has all available animals and relevant information listed.

Things haven't changed much in the way Heartland is operating. Normal days of operation and business hours are being kept and reclaims are available during those hours.

Reclaims are also available during the morning hours when staff is there cleaning. People just need to call and leave a voicemail and someone will get back to them.

People are asked to wash their hands and sanitize upon entering and exiting the building and to be mindful when considering coming in.

As mentioned, caring for the animals and finding them a good home is a top priority.

Heartland Pet Connection is not fostering animals for anyone at this time as the program was abandoned a few years back and, according to Theesen, would be difficult to restart right now.