Duh People for Common Sense, please note that Austin Texas is used as a comparable city because it is similar in size and demographics to Pima County, and their intake rate was slightly higher than ours. But IF size/population factually supported the statement there aren't enough people to adopt, how do we explain Washoe County (Reno, Nevada) whose population is only 45% of Pima's, while the shelter intake number was 65% of Pima's and they have succeeded in saving over 90% with one of the worst economies in the country. There are so many resources and examples to learn how we can do better. There's nothing to oppose, really, its all about learning what works and doing what we can too.
Thank you Mr Vanderpool. If you go directly to the data you learn in calendar year 2012, there were 23,514 dogs and cats that arrived at PACC alive and 11,338 were destroyed. That's 48%. Another city we might look to for comparison is Austin, Texas which has had similar intake numbers but saves over 90% of the dogs and cats that come to the shelter, as do over 150 other communities. That would indicate we could have saved 9,000 of the animals who were destroyed in 2012.
What these other communities have in common is a proven model, the No Kill Equation, which includes 11 essential components: a committed leadership, medical and behavioral intervention for those who are not incurably suffering or truly vicious, high volume/low cost spay and neuter services, comprehensive adoption programs, trap/neuter/return for feral cats, proactive return to owner services, helping owners who would rather keep their pets than drop them off, foster care, rescue, volunteers and public engagement. Please note what not is not included in the list: managing to change the ways of an irresponsible public, as that's never happened in these communities and that's WHY we have protective services for the vulnerable in all our communities.
No Kill Pima County supports additional funding for staffing (in the shelter and in the field) and appropriate space for sheltering the homeless and treating the ill and increased spay neuter services for pets and feral cats. The death rate will not dramatically change, however, unless the county leadership makes a commitment to implement proven life saving policies, procedures and services, many of which are not at all reliant on budget and in fact make economic sense for the shelter and the community. It is imperative that dollars are attached to mandates for evidence based best practice and procedures.
Thank you again, for helping to increase awareness as only an informed community can speak up and let their city and county representatives know we expect better, we KNOW what is possible and it is in the County's hands to make it happen. And, as also proven in over 150 communities, the public will whole-heartedly support these efforts by fostering, adopting, volunteering and donating like they never have before.
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