Summer can be a tough season for animal shelters, but those in the Austin have found ways to beat the heat and encourage the community to adopt.



Shelters typically take in more animals during the summer because animal's reproductive cycles kick into full gear during the hotter months, said Rebecca Reid, manager of marketing communications and branding at Austin Pets Alive.



Austin Pets Alive this year has already exceeded last year's adoptions total, Reid said, with 3,881 animals adopted so far in 2014 compared with 3,207 adoptions this same time in 2013.



"We're definitely ahead of last year," Reid said. "Fortunately we've had an exceptional number of adoptions. A lot of our adoptions [this year] have been with our parvovirus puppies and our long stay dogs."



Many dogs on "long stay" end up passing the normal adoption time window because they are older or resemble a breed that has a bad public image, Reid said. These animals cost significantly more than dogs adopted within the average wait period.



Ian Hallet, director of operations at Austin Humane Society, said this year's adoption numbers are steady compared with 2013, but the shelter is "bursting at the seams" due to a large number of recently admitted animals.



Community adoption specials are one way local shelters help incentivize residents to adopt rescue pets. The specials also help make adoption more affordable.



"With over 100 people moving into Austin every day, we know that there's enough homes out there for the shelter animals so we try to do a lot of adoption specials," Hallet said.



Summer is not the only time it is important these shelters raise awareness about the importance of adoption, Reid said.



"Adoptions are equally important every single month of the year," Reid said. "Obviously every adoption allows us to save not just the life of the adopted animal but the life of the animal we just pulled from the euthanasia list."



Sterilization of stray animals is a necessary action for local shelters to help keep their no-kill status, Hallet said.



"We're always looking for more and more people to trap cats in their neighborhood and bring them to us to be sterilized for free. We have done 35,000 surgeries since 2007 and the number [of animals] that go into Austin Animal Center per thousand people has dropped by 40 percent since we started that program," Hallet said.



Austin Pets Alive, Austin Humane Society and Austin Animal Center will continue holding events and specials throughout the year at various times to promote animal adoptions.