Red Paw Foundation's adoption centre at the Oasis Mall draws many visitors on Fridays Image Credit: Arshad Ali/XPRESS

Dubai: You can now walk into a mall in Dubai and adopt a pet.

Yes, you read that right. You can pick from a room full of abandoned, rescued or injured cats and dogs at the Oasis Mall every Friday, thanks to a unique initiative by the Red Paw Foundation (RPF), a registered organisation under the Emirates Animal Welfare Society.

“People lack basic education about trap-neuter-release programmes as a result of which the cat and dog population keeps growing. Thousands of kittens are either killed or come up for adoption every now and then,” said Mahin Bahrami, RPF founder.

Series of activities

She said the foundation’s adoption centre offers a series of activities for families who wish to check out the animals. “It’s only here that you can see pets freely moving around instead of being caged, so you can play and interact with them,” said Mahin. A Wall of Fame has pictures of the pets with all their details.

Sanjay Kapoor, general manager, Oasis Mall, said, “There are so many people who leave their pets behind in the UAE when they relocate. It’s so cruel on these animals. So we decided to support the Red Paw Foundation’s initiative that helps find new homes for these pets. They are providing a great opportunity to others who may want to look after the animals.”

The centre is open from 3 to 9pm every Friday. Although there is no charge for adoption, the cost (Dh600) of vaccinations, deworming, microchipping and neutering is recovered.