For the mother and daughter from Lake Grove, it was a major case of puppy love: a black Shar-Pei mix named Rosemary.
"She is just adorable," said Melanie Klein, 12, gushing. She hoped to make 5-month-old Rosemary her first pet.
Moments later, Lainie Klein, following the yellow paw-printed path leading into Huntington Town Animal Shelter, was filling out the adoption paperwork.
"I'd rather rescue a dog than buy one," she said. "At least you know the dog is going to a good home."
Rosemary was among scores of would-be pets showcased during the shelter's first-ever weekend adoption fair. The shelter and all-volunteer League for Animal Protection of Huntington offered 50 dogs and 100 cats for adoption.
The event, featuring live music outside and dog-training demonstrations, began Saturday and continues Sunday at the shelter, 104 Deposit Rd. in East Northport, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
"We want to encourage people to come down and adopt a man's best friend," said Huntington Town clerk Jo-Ann Raia.
This weekend only, the town is waiving the standard $95 adoption fee, but new pet owners will still have to buy an $8.50 dog license. All dogs available for adoption, ranging from pit bulls to bulldogs, were screened for behavioral problems and spayed or neutered. All have also had their rabies shots, town officials said.
Cats and kittens are also available for adoption through Grateful Paw Cat Shelter for a reduced fee. All cats are spayed or neutered, checked by veterinarians and given all age-appropriate shots, shelter officials said.
"We are hoping people are going to come in and adopt," said Debbie Larkin, president of the league, which runs the cat shelter. "Cats are great for first-time pet owners because they are low maintenance."