If you think dogs are man's best friend, you are barking up the wrong tree. Salt Lake County Animal Services say cats are the nation's most popular pet - and June is Adopt-A-Cat Month.

Animal Services Director Peggy Hinnen said the promotion is held in June because it is the peak feline breeding season, and homeless kittens are coming out of alleys and into the animal shelter in big numbers."We are crowded with cats right now. It's a tough time for us, but a great time for anyone who wants a cat because there are so many in need of homes, so many kittens and cats to choose from," Hinnen said.

Adopt-A-Cat Month takes its inspiration from Morris the Cat, who was found in an animal shelter by the Nine Lives Cat Food Co. and made its national spokescat. The cat food company and the American Humane Association are national sponsors of Adopt-A-Cat Month.

Animal Services officials say cats are enjoying increased popularity because they're good company, intelligent and are more self-sufficient than many other pets - which is an important consideration for today's lifestyles.

All people adopting a cat from the county animal shelter, 511 W. 39th South, must pay a neutering or spaying fee. Male cats are $20 and females are $35. A free health exam is included along with a safe guard cat collar and identification tag.

For more information call 264-2267.