OK, we've been doing these spotlights on local pets available for adoption for some time now -- and we're not sure we've ever felt that heartstring-yank more profoundly than we did while putting together this week's crop.

As the temperature drops and the autumn leaves begin to fall, it could be the ideal time to bring a new furry friend into your home here in Chicago.

Scroll down to check out photos of local cats, dogs and other pets that are currently up for adoption at a number of area shelters. To our knowledge, they've all been spayed or neutered and are up to date with their vaccinations.

If this slideshow doesn't satisfy your cute animal fix, be sure to check out past features linked below the gallery either by scrolling down or clicking here. Many of the previously featured animals still are in need of forever homes.

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  • Cartigan

    Cartigan is a beautiful 13-year-old girl whose previous owners recently moved into an apartment that does not allow pets. Visit Cartigan at the Tree House Humane Society, 1212 W. Carmen Ave., Chicago. <a href="http://www.treehouseanimals.org/" target="_hplink">Click here</a> or call (773) 784-5488 for more information.

  • Squiggy

    Squiggy is a male 1-year-old Terrier mix. Visit Squiggy at the Naperville Area Humane Society at 1620 W. Diehl Road in Naperville. <a href="http://www.napervilleareahumanesociety.org/" target="_hplink">Click here</a> or call (630) 420-8989 for more information.

  • Cora

    Cora is a striking 9-year-old female domestic shorthair. Visit Cora at <a href="http://www.hhforcats.org/">Harmony House for Cats</a>, 2914 N Elston, or call 773-293-6103 for more information.

  • Speckles

    Speckles is a female 6-year-old Labrador/Hound mix. Visit Speckles at PAWS Chicago, 1997 N. Clybourn Avenue, Chicago. <a href="http://www.pawschicago.org" target="_hplink">Click here</a> or call 773-935-PAWS for more information.

  • Yuri

    Yuri is a female Dwarf rabbit. Visit Yuri at the Red Door Animal Shelter, 2410 W. Lunt Ave., Chicago. <a href="http://www.reddoorshelter.org/" target="_hplink">Click here</a> or call (773) 764-2242 for more information.

  • Apache

    Apache is a very talkative male domestic longhair. Visit Apache at <a href="http://www.hhforcats.org/">Harmony House for Cats</a>, 2914 N Elston, or call 773-293-6103 for more information.

  • Clancy

    Clancy is a male 3-year-old Boxer mix. Visit Clancy at the Naperville Area Humane Society at 1620 W. Diehl Road in Naperville. <a href="http://www.napervilleareahumanesociety.org/" target="_hplink">Click here</a> or call (630) 420-8989 for more information.

  • Tess

    Tess is a female 8-month-old Terrier. Visit Tess at the Evanston Animal Shelter, 2310 Oakton Street. <a href="http://www.care-evanston.org" target="_hplink">Click here</a> or call (847) 705-2653 for more information.

  • Nina

    Nina is an 11-year-old female with a beautiful grey coat. Visit Nina at the Tree House Humane Society, 1212 W. Carmen Ave., Chicago. <a href="http://www.treehouseanimals.org/" target="_hplink">Click here</a> or call (773) 784-5488 for more information.

  • Fleece

    Fleece is a very soft female Rex rabbit. Visit Fleece at the Red Door Animal Shelter, 2410 W. Lunt Ave., Chicago. <a href="http://www.reddoorshelter.org/" target="_hplink">Click here</a> or call (773) 764-2242 for more information.

  • Dani

    Dani is a female 1-year-old Calico. Visit Dani at PAWS Chicago, 1997 N. Clybourn Avenue, Chicago. <a href="http://www.pawschicago.org" target="_hplink">Click here</a> or call 773-935-PAWS for more information.

  • How to Adopt a Dog

    Learn about what you should consider when adopting a pet, and the benefits of adopting different breeds of dogs at different ages.