A 700% increase in California lifesaving. Legislation to ban the retail sale of milled dogs and cats advances in Rhode Island. The New York City pound has failed to meet promised deadlines for lifesaving since 2005. Finding homes for all the lives at risk in U.S. pounds. Treating dogs kindly reduces stress in shelters. A Colorado pound returns a dog to a rescue group in a garbage bag. An Animal Farm Foundation podcast calls for killing all but “the best” dogs. And Austin kills a dog out of spite, despite his former rescuer begging managers to spare his life.
In case you missed it:
- In California, it is illegal for shelters to kill animals who rescue groups are willing to save. Since passing such a law, the number of animals transferred to rescue groups rather than killed went from 12,526 animals a year before the law went into effect to 99,783 after — a nearly 700% increase, all at no cost to taxpayers.
- Legislation to ban the retail sales of commercially-bred dogs and cats in pet stores is one step closer to passage in Rhode Island. The bill passed the House and will now be taken up by the Senate.
- New York City pound enablers promised a No Kill NYC by 2005. They failed. They promised it by 2008. They failed. They promised it by 2012. They failed. They promised it by 2015. They failed. And so rather than continue making promises and failing, they claimed they achieved it already. They haven’t.
- About two million dogs and cats will be killed in pounds and shelters this year. By some estimates, it is as low as 1.5 million. Can we find homes for those animals? Yes we can.
- Conventional wisdom says that the longer a dog is in a pound, the more likely s/he is to become “kennel crazy.” But that is just an excuse to kill. The longer a dog stays in a shelter, the less stressed s/he becomes… but only if treated well.
- Linda, a rescued dog, spent five months with a Colorado rescue group, living with and playing with other dogs without incident. After adoption, the family surrendered Linda to a local pound, claiming incidents with other dogs. The rescue group which originally placed her wanted her back. The pound said no. They ultimately did return her — in a garbage bag.
- A recent guest on a podcast by Animal Farm Foundation called for the killing of dogs with past trauma in pounds across the U.S. if those dogs have behavior problems, even if the behavior is treatable (indeed, minor) because only “the best” dogs should ever be offered for adoption; a view that is out of step with the latest studies on dog behavior and 21st Century values.
And finally, Austin Animal Center recently killed Tucker (pictured here) who had three places to go: a local non-profit organization; a trainer/rescuer out of state; and Tucker’s former family. The official justification for his killing is “behavior” or “aggression.” Tucker had a bite history. The real cause of death appears to be spite. This is the story of his short life and tragic death. It is also the story of the rescuer who once lived with Tucker, wanted him back, and begged indifferent shelter managers for his life. The dysfunction in our animal shelter system doesn’t just hurt animals. It hurts people, too.
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