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Good Day Gives Back: Giving abandoned animals a second chance at life

Animal Refuge League of Greater Portland

PORTLAND, Maine (WGME) -- About 7.6 million animals end up in shelters nationwide every year, according to the ASPCA. Nearly 3 million of them are euthanized.

The Animal Refuge League of Greater Portland is one of the many shelters in Maine committed to caring for stray, abandoned or surrendered animals. They take in 4,000 dogs, cats and small critters every year and provide the best care possible until they’re adopted.

"We are that safety net for them-- that landing space where they're well cared for and get all the love in the world," said Jeana Roth, Community Relations Manager at ARLGP.

Animals can stay at the shelter as long as they need, although Roth explained they often get adopted quickly. Dogs and cats usually find new homes within one to two weeks.

"We really try to make a match with families and animals, so we know they're going to a home that's appropriate to their needs," said Roth.

ARLGP relies on volunteers and community support. The shelter has over 250 weekly volunteers that help with a variety of services and programs. ARLGP also receives generous donations of pet food, toys and cleaning supplies from residents.

"We live in a community that really supports adoption and we're able to place so many animals in this community," said Roth. "It's really wonderful to see."

ARLGP is planning an expansion to a new, 25,000 square-foot facility. Roth explained the goal isn't to take in more animals, but give current animals space so they can feel comfortable. The new facility will allow more free-roaming cat rooms and larger kennels for dogs. Additionally, there will be a community education space for dog training and workshops.

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