Cats living in San Francisco shelters may have found their way out.
San Francisco Animal Care & Control begins a partnership with Pet Food Express on Saturday to open a permanent adoption separate from its own shelter, SFACC spokeswoman Deb Campbell said.
SFACC and Pet Food Express will kick off their partnership with a yarn cutting by adoptable kittens at noon at the 1975 Market St. pet store.
The event will allow potential owners to come and begin adopting pets at a reduced rate. Pet Food Express will only be housing kittens and cats.
It will be the first time the SFACC has partnered with a private organization.
The Market Street Pet Food Express has provided food, toys and treats to SFACC animals for the past two years and offered to extend a shelter service about a year ago, Campbell said.
“They saw it work in other stores,” Campbell said. “It could work here.”
The San Francisco location marks the third Bay Area Pet Food Express to begin partnerships with local shelters and rescue centers to house cats on a regular basis, Pet Food Express Director for Community Relations Mike Murray said.
Campbell thinks the traffic the store receives will allow the cats to get “exposure” they may not have gotten otherwise.
Murray said it may be “depressing or foreboding” for some to go to a shelter to adopt.
“The shelters end up with the most animals left on their doorstep,” Murray said.
SFACC has anywhere between 300 and 500 animals per day and its numbers have gone up due to the economy, Campbell said.
“It’s been really sad,” she said.
Each Pet Food Express store hosts 12 kittens and cats at a time, giving the animals more room than with a normal cage, Murray said.
The Walnut Creek store at 1388 S. California Blvd. has had around 350 cats adopted, where Murray estimated it takes less than a week for a cat to find a new home.
“People will come look one day and [come] back to finalize [the adoption] the next day,” Murray said.
The third participating Bay Area pet store is located at 1152 Blossom Hill Road in San Jose.
Many Pet Food Express locations host rescue groups and shelters each weekend as a way to help pets get adopted. It has taken part in the adoption of more than 51,000 animals.