ELYRIA, Ohio — Now that pandemic restrictions have been lifted, pet shelters around the state are re-opening for in-person adoptions.

What You Need To Know

  • Friendship Animal Protective League rescues companion animals with the goal of adopting out spayed and neutered animals into homes

  • It's the largest animal shelter in Lorain County

  • APL is a private, independent, non-profit humane society founded in Elyria

Dolores and Karen Sultzbaugh were on a mission as they entered the Friendship Animal Protective League in Lorain. They're determined to find a small dog for Dolores.

"I need another one. I need somebody to talk to being all alone," said Dolores Sultzbaugh of Lorain.

Dolores and her daughter-in-law were excited to finally be able to enter the APL again and see the pets in person rather than virtually.

"Pets really help people's outlook on life and everybody's been depressed and don't have anyone to talk to so a pet is always a good thing to have in your house," said Karen Sultzbaugh, a Lorain resident.

Dolores, 88, lost her beloved dog, Ellie, a few weeks ago, leaving her all alone.

"My husband passed away when I had the pet. She really helped me and helped me through that too," she said.

Dolores found a new companion and his name is "Rukus," a 6-year-old pug mix.

She filled out the proper paperwork and the two are getting along very well.

"I've got a whole big box of toys you can have your pick," Dolores said.

Now the two new friends can keep each other company so neither will be lonely anymore.