New Yorkers turn to pet adoption to de-stress

These are stressful times.

Civil unrest - pouring out into the streets...

Tens of millions of Americans - out of work...

Then there's balancing the new rules of social distancing...

And now the beginnings of a much feared second wave...

In search of relief - some New Yorkers like Jocelyn Tsai are turning to adopting furry friends to ease their souls.

"I started off by fostering Archer because, you know, everyone's staying at home during this time, and I thought that timing couldn't be more perfect, and I ended up just falling in love with him. And I adopted him two weeks after. And it was a total foster fail, but it's definitely worth it. I think just having a constant companion, because, I think, social-distancing and isolation has been a really lonely experience for a lot of people, and it has certainly for me, so... so, Archer, come here. So having a dog around definitely helps, which is having someone around, and someone you can talk to, someone you can hang out with and snuggle with."

She's not alone - pet foster care and adoptions have surged in the Big Apple since stay-at-home orders were put in place in March.

And it's not just dog lovers who are signing up.

Feline friends are opening their doors and theirs hearts as well, the demand so strong at Animal Cares Center of New York that there's a waiting list for kitty cats, says foster supervisor Julia Lubbock.

"So, when this all started, we did a massive push for new foster parents through our social media, through emails. And the response was unbelievable. We got 3,000 within the first day and that rose to 5,000, 6,000 very, very quickly. We have never been in the position to have more foster parents than we do animals. I can barely describe the feeling. It gave everybody in the shelter, not just the foster team, but everybody, a lot of hope, a lot of joy in a time where people are scared and nervous and they don't want to be going outside. But we had people showing up."

All that interest has translated into more than 600 adoptions at this agency alone in just three months.

Typically, the company only had roughly 200 animals in foster care at any given time.

For Tsai, she says her new love was just what she needed, when she needed it.

"I think I always say that, every time I look at him, I feel like my heart can explode from how much I love him. He's being such a great companion and just got me through, like, the whole pandemic and just... he's just been there for me, and it's great. I think there's nothing like your pet's love for you."