'Snuggle delivery' at St. Pete business helps find multiple rescue animals new homes

A St. Petersburg business hosted their eighth annual "snuggle delivery" of cats and dogs from the Humane Society of Tampa Bay. 

Power Design employees could sign up for some stress relief cuddle time, but the ultimate goal was for the animals to become permanent additions to their families. Power Design even covered all adoption costs. 

"Since we started doing ‘snuggle delivery’ in 2015, we've probably placed over 100 dogs and cats within our Power Design family," said Power Design VP of Engagement Morgan Permuy.

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With all 10 dogs and four cats successfully given to new owners, the rendezvous is one of many adoption events held by partners of the Humane Society to raise awareness and reduce crowding in shelters. 

Director of shelter operations for the Humane Society of Tampa Bay Danyelle Ho said overcrowding has always been a consistent problem, but it's gotten worse with the economy.

"People are struggling," Ho added. "They're struggling to provide care for their pets, and they're struggling just to make it day-by-day."

They're not the only local shelter with an influx of animals. The Humane Society of Tampa Bay partners with shelters like the Hillsborough County Resource Center to trade animals if they feel one is a better fit in the other place, or if they have more space. Senior Supervisor of volunteer services at the resource center Chelsea Waldeck said they are currently at 150% capacity, and had to get creative to make space. 

"When we start to see dogs decline in behavioral ways, we'll pull them into our own offices," Waldeck said. "It gets them out of their crates and allows us to monitor their personalities and pass that info along to potential adopters." 

It's a small solution to a bigger issue. Both shelters do not euthanize and must recommend other resources or tell them to come back if they don't have space. The resource center also has an entire team that works like a social service operation. 

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When a person tries to surrender an animal, they first work to contact family members, or try to rehome before taking them in. 

Staff at both locations encourage people to check out their local shelters, ask questions, and foster animals to give them a break from crowded facilities. 

"When we're full it limits our ability to help other animals in need," Ho said.