It was the first time in 12 years Christine Fatheree, the director of Summit County Animal Control in Akron, Ohio, would say these words and hopefully it’s not the last: There are no animals left to adopt.
When people came to adopt cats and dogs on Saturday Nov. 7 at the shelter’s sixth annual adopt-a-thon event, Fatheree had to turn people away because by about 12 p.m. that day every animal had found a forever home – an amazing feat for any animal shelter.
The facility was empty and silent afterward, something Fatheree has never heard there before. “We’ve never had the building completely empty ever. It’s never, ever, been empty,” she tells PEOPLE. “It was weird.”
Fatheree said all 93 animals living at the facility were adopted out within the first 90 minutes of the event.
The line started at 6:30 a.m. and many determined people brought lounge chairs. By the time the doors of the shelter opened at 10 a.m., the line was 300 people long, Fatheree told ABC News, who first reported the story.
It’s customary to have a handful of animals left behind after big adoptions events like these, but on Saturday that was not so.
“There have been cats here since June, who I thought, ‘Oh, they’ll be here a while,’” Fatheree tells PEOPLE. “But they got adopted!”
In the days following the event, animals have started to trickle into the shelter again – 20 dogs and 15 cats so far – but Fatheree and the rest of the staff and volunteers will never forget that Saturday.
“The line was ridiculous,” Fatheree says. “That was a huge success for us.”