Dallas Animal Services launches a new program to help you find your best pet fit

by Allison Hatfield | January 14, 2020

Are you looking for a pet? Dallas Animal Services (DAS) wants to help you find the perfect companion for you or your family. Its new Meet Your Match adoption program is a personalized approach to connecting adoptable pets with the right homes. Born out of the ASPCA’s efforts to create a research-based approach to “increase the likelihood that shelter dogs and cats will bond with their adopters,” here’s how it works:

Go to dallascityhall.com and choose a time slot (currently the program is offered only on Wednesdays). Then fill out a short questionnaire about your living space, your family, pets you already have, types of pets you want to meet, and pet-related concerns you’d like to discuss. When you go to your appointment at the shelter, a matchmaker will introduce you to the animals who are the best fit for you and answer your questions. You can even bring your current pets to the meet-and-greet.

With hundreds of resident dogs and cats, puppies and kittens — and more coming into DAS each day — it can be overwhelming for someone to walk in and find the perfect pet without assistance. Because staff and volunteers get to know the animals’ personalities well, they are able to curate a selection of pets that are most likely to fit a family or lifestyle. The Meet Your Match program has been shown to increase adoptions and decrease returns at shelters that use it, according to the ASPCA.

The agency is already doing a great job. In December, DAS had a live release rate of 93.8 percent. That was a record for the city’s animal shelter. The average rate for 2019 was 87.9 percent — a far cry from its 2007 live release rate of 13 percent. The shelter has earned nationwide recognition for its success, which it attributes to more adoptions, more transfers to rescue partners, and more pets being returned to their owners.

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