The Humane Society of Southern Arizona is offering free adoptions today for dogs and cats to celebrate the unveiling of its renovated dog exercise yard. The work was donated by Santa Rita Landscaping. Above, Foreman Jose Avila paints lines for the new stonework in the yard.

Kelly Presnell / Arizona Daily Star

The grass will soon be greener for the dogs at the Humane Society of Southern Arizona, thanks to a makeover from Santa Rita Landscaping.

The organization won a $10,000 renovation for the dog exercise yard at its Companions for Life Center through a contest sponsored by the landscaping company.

Upgrades to the 1,380-square-foot yard include artificial turf with a special infill to control odors, trees, benches, a drip system and plants, said Garrett Ham, co-owner of Santa Rita Landscaping.

The current space is mostly old grass and weeds, he said.

“It’s going to look much more inviting, much more visually appealing,” said Samantha Esquivel, spokeswoman for the Humane Society of Southern Arizona.

The contest idea was dreamed up by the company’s employees, who were looking for a way to give back to the community, Ham said.

The winner was narrowed down from 30 nonprofits and was chosen through a combination of Facebook votes and employee input, Ham said.

“We wanted a project that $10,000 would make a difference, so the project kind of had to fit what we were able to do and the charity’s needs” he said.

Santa Rita employees and family members will help put finishing touches on the project before a public unveiling today.

To celebrate the renovation, the Humane Society will offer free adoptions all day today for dogs and cats. Each animal will be neutered or spayed, microchipped, vaccinated and will receive a free health and wellness check.

The unveiling happens at 2 p.m. today at the Companions for Life Center, 3465 E. Kleindale Road. Cake and refreshments will be served.

Contact reporter Veronica M. Cruz at or 573-4224.