It was smiles and giggles and an occasional “ouch” for 12-year-old Adah as she played with a lively puppy in a visiting room at the Maricopa County Animal Care and Control shelter in South Phoenix.

Then it was time to play with a kitten during her tour guided by Leanna Taylor, executive director of The Arizona Pet Project and Daniel Gonzalez, a shelter intervention counselor with the group that partners with the country shelter to keep pets with their families.

“I like cats best,” says Adah, explaining that it’s their soft fur that gives them an edge.

“I’d want my forever family to have a cat or a dog – or even a ranch,” says Adah.

Adah is looking forward to the start of school where her favorite class is art. And while she likes to draw and color during her free time, she has career ambitions that are more science than art.

“I want to be a nurse when I grow up,” she says, adding, “I want to be a pediatric nurse because I like children.”

Adah says she would like children to be part of her forever family. Ideally, she says, she would have a younger sibling and an older sibling in a house headed by a mother and a father.

“I’d want a family that does family game night, too,” Adah says.

Adah is open to moving out of state to find her forever family, but her one request is, “my family likes to go to fun places and likes to celebrate holidays and birthdays.”

Watch the stories of children in foster care waiting on forever families each week on the Wednesday’s Child segment between 5-6 a.m. on 12 Today. You can also view previously aired stories at

For more information on children eligible for adoption, call Aid to Adoption of Special Kids (AASK) at 602-930-4900, or visit