Animal Rescues Are Reducing Adoption Fees to $25 or Less As Part of the Empty the Shelters Campaign via Getty Images

One of the many benefits of adopting an animal is that rescue pets are more affordable than designer breeds. The fee shelters charge new owners is significantly cheaper than what they'd pay a pet store or breeder, but for some animal lovers, even a few hundred dollars is beyond their budget.

An event taking place across the U.S. this month aims to make cat and dog adoption accessible to more people. From May 2 to the 15, hundreds of participating shelters are lowering their adoption fees to $25 or less.

The Empty the Shelters campaign is sponsored by the BISSELL Pet Foundation. During the first two weeks in May, 275 shelters across 40 states will take part in the program. To see if your local animal rescue is offering reduced fees, check out the interactive map on The graphic shows you which organizations are participating and lists their website for you to check their event hours, available pets, and adoption requirements.

The event is a great opportunity for people looking to bring a furry companion into their home, but you don't have to be looking to adopt to participate. If you want to support the cause without visiting a shelter, you can make a donation online. One hundred percent of the contributions will go toward placing shelter pets with families.

Cats are generally cheaper to adopt than dogs, but there are still plenty of reasons to adopt rather than shop for one. Cats often end up in shelters due to circumstances that have nothing to do with physical or behavioral issues. Here are some expert tips for bringing a feline friend into your life.