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County residents can help Petfinder Foundation build needed outdoor play area at Animal Services

RELEASE DATE: February 25, 2013

TAVARES — Lake County Animal Services requires improvements to their facility in order to accommodate the basic necessities of animals they house at the animal shelter. The Petfinder Foundation has launched a Groupon campaign online to raise more than $500 for a new outdoor cat play area at the facility.

“Animal Services assists more than 1,450 dogs and cats each month, yet its cat area lacks natural light and air conditioning,” said Gregg Welstead, director of Lake County’s Conservation & Compliance Department. “Under so much stress, cats can become sick more easily and often go without the chance to play and show their personalities to potential adopters.”

Each $10 raised will go toward painting and adding enrichment elements to the indoor cat room at the shelter. Donations may be made through Wednesday at www.groupon.com/deals/petfinder-foundation.

“The proposed play area’s fresh air, cat trees, scratchers, and toys will exercise cats’ bodies and minds while letting them engage in instinctive behaviors to help prevent stress,” said Emily Fromm, vice president of development at the Petfinder Foundation. “With the cats calmer and able to display their personalities, they are more likely to find adoptive homes.”

Fromm said that during normal breaks in the academic year, RESCUE U brings a group of volunteers from various parts of the country to a shelter for a service project to meet a specific need of that shelter. Lake County Animal Services has been chosen out of many locations in the country for a grant valued at $20,000 to $25,000 – in addition to the labor provided by the students. The online campaign is intended to gain some visibility for the project and give the public the opportunity to take part with a small donation.

The Petfinder Foundation is the nonprofit arm of Petfinder.com, which houses one of the largest databases of adoptable pets with more than 13,500 animal-adoption organizations represented. The Petfinder Foundation supports the groups that post on its database with funding, equipment, supplies and volunteers. As part of its emergency-management program, it also prepares shelters for emergencies, and helps shelters and pet-owners recover in the wake of natural disasters. To find out more about the Petfinder Foundation, contact Emily Fromm, vice president of development, at 973-762-1676 or Emily@petfinderfoundation.com.

To learn more about the Lake County Animal Services Division, call 352-343-9688 or visit www.lakecountyfl.gov/departments/conservation_and_compliance/animal_services/.

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More Information:
Emily Fromm
973-762-1676
Emily@petfinderfoundation.com
http://www.groupon.com/deals/petfinder-foundation

Lake County media contact:
Communications Department
Public Information Officer
Office: 352-343-9603; Cell: 352-455-0445
klafollette@lakecountyfl.gov

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