SPCA will close location at Freehold Raceway Mall

The Monmouth County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MCSPCA) has announced its satellite location at the Freehold Raceway Mall, Freehold Township, will be closing as of Oct. 1.

The Freehold Adoption Center business model was created six years ago and was the first New Jersey retail location of its kind, according to a press release. The location in the mall was a program designed to offer the alternative to adopt a homeless animal rather than to purchase dogs from puppy mill breeders.

Since the launch of the Freehold location in 2012, 126 towns have passed anti-puppy mill measures, making New Jersey the leader in the country for local ordinances passed, according to the press release.

The Freehold location stemmed from a new approach using the retail model of pet stores, but changing the sourcing of the animals, helping to make adoptable animals more accessible to the public. The satellite location has also served as an information center where the public could learn about puppy mills, spaying, neutering and community cat services, according to the press release.

The MCSPCA will maintain the number of animals rescued from struggling, over-populated shelters and continue recirculating a portion of adoption fees back to help aid in spay/neuter efforts of the origin shelters, according to the press release.

The animals that are rescued will now be exclusively available for adoption at the MCSPCA’s Eatontown location.

“We are proud of the message the Freehold Adoption Center has conveyed to the public about the horrific practices of puppy mills and the importance of adoption,” said Ross Licitra, MCSPCA executive director and chief of humane law enforcement. “The society’s goal of bringing awareness to puppy mill practices has been a tremendous success and has generated momentum to encourage adoption and responsible pet ownership throughout the state.”