Pick up a furry family member at the fair

rgiwargis@mercedsunstar.comJune 10, 2013 

— The Last Hope Cat Kingdom will have a booth featuring adoptable animals at the Merced County Fair this year, a first for the fair.

The booth will be inside the commerce building and will offer on-site adoptions, according to volunteer Amanda Hage. About 10 to 15 animals will be on display each day, including cats, kittens, dogs and puppies.

"We can use the thousands of people who go to the fair to find homes for the valley's homeless animals," Hage said.

Having a face-to-face interaction with fairgoers helps the animals find loving homes, she added. "I think getting to meet the animal and interact with it, it's easier to know which one is the one," Hage said.

In addition to live adoptions, the booth will feature information about low-cost spaying and neutering. There also will be a fund-raising raffle for $1 per ticket.

Prizes include dinner at local restaurants and tickets to a San Francisco Giants game.

More than 75,000 people attended the Merced County Fair last year, according to marketing manager Diane Conway. "This is just one more example of how we're becoming more and more of a community fair, and there's something for everybody," she said.

For the Last Hope Cat Kingdom, it's an opportunity to find homes for the more than 55 dogs and 100 cats that live at the shelter.

Adoption prices at the fair will be $200 for puppies, $100 for dogs, $65 for kittens and $75 for cats. The cost includes the animal's spay or neuter, vaccinations, rabies shot and de-worming.

Once a pet is adopted, volunteers will hold them until the fairgoer is ready to go home or the end of the day.

Anyone interested in volunteering at the booth can call (209) 261-4327.

The theme of the 122nd annual fair, which runs June 12-16, is "Thank You Veterans."

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