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By Tracy DeFore, County of San Diego Communications Office

December 12, 2016 (San Diego) -- Buying your dog a festive doggie sweater or coat for the holidays? Throw two into the shopping basket or donate an old one to County Animal Services’ “Paw It Forward” campaign for pets of homeless people.

Every year, Animal Services takes part in Project Homeless Connect, an event that offers a wide array of services to the local homeless population. Dozens of dogs, and even cats, show up with their homeless owners.

County Animal Services gives the animals brief check-ups, vaccinations, licenses and microchips but they’d like to offer a warm, fuzzy sweater or coat for these animals, too.

This “Paw It Forward” campaign would help the homeless pets stay warm during the cold winter months.

“We know the homeless will be getting a number of services but we want to make sure their pets get some attention, too,” said County Animal Services Director Dawn Danielson. “The homeless often take better care of their pets than they do of themselves. When we gave out pet sweaters and coats at the event last year, these pet owners loved them!”

About 400 pet sweaters and coats were distributed and County Animal Services hopes to gather even more this year. There’s a special need for medium, large and extra-large sweaters but any size is welcome.

The Project Homeless Connect event takes place Wednesday, Jan. 25 at Golden Hall. County Animal Services will accept donations of new and used pet sweaters and jackets at their three locations starting now through Friday, Dec. 30. For more information, contact Animal Services at (619) 767-2675.

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