Find Your Forever Pet at This Mississippi Hotel

Long-term fostering and adoption on site allows people pick their pet and move it right in into their room.

Jan 9, 2020

(Romanova Anna / Shutterstock.com)

Dogs add so much to people's lives. In fact, sharing your home with furbabies can make you feel less lonely and actually improve your health. Just petting a dog can lower your blood pressure.

The best way to acquire your new family member is via pet adoption and one extended-stay Mississippi hotel makes that a snap. That's because they bring the pets right to you by hosting long-time fostering and dog adoption on site.

Since 2018, Home 2 Suites in Biloxi, Mississippi has hosted a "Fostering Hope" site in its lobby for shelter dogs from the Humane Society of South Mississippi in Gulfport. If a resident is approved for adoption, they can move their new family addition right in.

The program was founded by Teresa Johnston, the hotel's sales director who saw the possibility of the hotel being part of a long-term fostering program for the shelter according to USA Today.

"They have a lot of transient guests who stay for months at a time near our army and navy bases and that's just enough time to fall in love with a dog," Bianca Janik, the shelter's relations manager told USA Today. She said that a few of the new adopters have been in the military.

Hotel guests who want to adopt the dogs have to fill out an application and be approved. There is a $50 adoption fee. All of the dogs have been neutered or spayed, microchipped, are up to date on vaccines and given heartworm prevention medication. Just like a standard adoption from the shelter itself.

"We have a very open adoption program," Janik said. "People are trying to do the right thing by adopting. We reserve the right to deny. [We] may tell them we don’t feel comfortable, come visit our shelter tomorrow and we’ll find one that is right."

If an application is accepted, the dog can move into the guest's hotel room. To date, 33 hotel guests have given the shelter dogs forever homes.

When a dog is adopted, his or her place is taken in the lobby kennel by another adoptable animal that has been carefully screened to see if they are good candidates for the lobby according to Janik.

"Because there are live animals are in the mix, we have to be able to trust that their health and well-being are taken care of first and foremost," she said.

The humane society shelter takes in almost 7,000 dogs and cats a year and rehomes 80 percent of them. They also rescue and rehome cats, rabbits, small animals, horses, birds and reptiles with an open adoption process.

The hotel plays a small but important role in helping find forever homes for some of the shelter's dogs. So, if you want to have unconditional love, adopt a furbaby of your own from a shelter or animal rescue organization near you.

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BONNIE RIVA RAS, EDITOR & WRITER
Bonnie Riva Ras has dedicated her life to promoting social justice. She loves to write about empowering women, helping children, educational innovations, and advocating for the environment & sustainability.