Kari Killinger, left, and Bella Killinger consider adopting a guinea pig that Kari is holding during an animal adoption event on Aug. 24.


Small local animal rescues gathered for an adoption event for the third consecutive year in Smokey Point on Aug. 24.

Food, vendors and a few of the smaller animal rescue organizations came out to display their animals at Arlington Tractor Supply.

Locals could see a variety of animals from horses to cats to hamsters and gerbils.

“I think it is pretty cool. I like how they have so many different types of animals to look at and potentially adopt,” said local Joslyn Henderson.

The event is an opportunity for the smaller organizations to gather.

“This year my regular Red Waggin’ has come down and the newest rescue is the Heart String for Horses as well,” said Paul Lewis, who runs the Tulalip animal shelter Forgotten Kingdom and organizes the event each year.

Heart Strings for Horses in Granite Falls is one of the few small rescues in the region that works with horses.

“We take in any orphan foals, train them and teach them to drink from a bucket and so that you can handle them and then we find adoptive parents,” said Beverly Boshart, executive officer of the organization.

The event supports small, volunteer-run rescues that help animals. 

“There are quite a few small organizations around, we’re one of the few horse ones. We’re very small so we rely on donations and volunteers,” said Boshart. “I do this in my spare time as I work full time as well."

Lewis said that all the animal organizations have to work together to continue providing services.

“We’re the ones who take the case load off the other ones,” he said. “Like the Everett Animal Shelter, they get overloaded and with us they don’t have as much of a case load."

It can be difficult out there for the organizations that are more local.

“We need funding from the people. Almost everyone in the world has a pet so they know how hard it is to take care of them,” said Monica Lynn, vice president of Forgotten Kingdom.

Lewis said there is often a high closure rate.

“This year I was shocked at just how many had closed,” he said. “Every year I've got to make phone calls to get everyone invited [to this event] and for a lot of them I was getting disconnected numbers or messages that they’re not operating anymore."

The animal adoption event serves as a way to connect to the community.

“We’re out here to get the awareness out for adoption and some of the other groups that are local and doing really great things,” said Boshart. “We’ll definitely come back."

“I like that everyone showed up and we got together. It was a good turnout,” said Lynn.

“This is the only time in the year that I can get all these rescues together at one time,” said Lewis. “I like meeting the different rescues and getting new ones in.”

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