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  #31  
Old 07-02-2009
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Originally Posted by SixbyFire View Post
most of our animals where I work are evaluated by at least two people. This way its not just one person saying, oh the dog looked at me funny, put it down.

Jeff


Although I am the one that makes the decision at our shelter as to which animals are euthanized for medical reasons, I always run it past the ACOs first before I suggest this to the Health Officers. I don't perform convenience euthanasias. There is always someone who is going to disagree with whether or not an animal should be euthanized. The ACOs are there daily with the animals at the shelter; the really ill ones are at my hospital. The ACOs come by my practice frequently enough to evaluate the condition of the animals they bring. With at least two of us making the decision together, it is less likely for someone to say that we euthanized based solely on space vs. because an animal was truly ill. Also, blood results and other tests could make an animal look as though it is not going to recover without expensive surgery/treatment or never recover, but some of them will improve with basic treatment. We had one puppy that based on the films alone, the dog looked like he needed his leg amputated. The specialist that looked at the films thought this; so did I. The dog lived at my hospital for a few weeks so I was able to observe him. The only thing wrong with this dog now is that he does not lift his leg to urinate. Otherwise, he acts normally, running all over the house. You would never know that this was the same dog who 2 years ago, people were discussing amputation.

Miracles do happen if given time to observe the animals. Having said that, finances do play a role in shelter medicine. With two (or more) people making the decision to euthanize an animal, it becomes a better situation since more than one opinion is heard on the animal's case.
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  #32  
Old 07-02-2009
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I am going to post my completely politically correct version, unless this thread moves to the ACO section only. (well it didn't quite end up as tactful as I would have liked)

The ideas that Nathan Winograd have are good, but are not new. He was the first to write them down and publicize.

I disagree with the us against them mentality that is encouraged in Redemption 1 and 2. I work towards cooperation and the role all shelters play in a community, and the need for all types. (I have had "no kill" shelters fear there funding being pulled and need the aggressive animals euthanized at my shelter, of which I do not judge) I don't think funding should be based solely on the number game.

As far as each shelter taking away from each other that can happen and I recommend you all sit down and look at who is good at what and each promote different strengths about each shelters work. (It really works)
Shelters that have been briefly managed by Nathan Winograd and strictly close their borders and enlist waiting lists for intakes. I know when my public comes in, it is either we take or they dump. We are mandated to take, but I do understand the different kinds of rescues that do not and can limit intake and offer waiting lists. It is about options and choice for the public, of which redemption condemns. There is only one formula in this book.

The definitions for adoptable in redemption are dying with zero prognosis for quality of life or through a court order determined vicious. As animal control/public safety I have grave concern for suggesting animals that are clearly aggressive be placed for adoption.

I speak with my rescue community monthly about rehabilitative programs for mild aggression, and as of right now there are none. Like I said pieces of the puzzle need to be evaluated to identify the shortfalls and who can fix what and when.

I have attending "no kill" speakers and proudly had to stand up and say "don't shoot animal control" due to the deragatory remarks made about the great work we do. We are on the same page, but two things are missing from redemption. Public Safety and Public Health.

I will get off my soap box now
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  #33  
Old 07-02-2009
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One issue I have with no-kill is the public perception. When John Q Public hears the term no-kill, they think that anything that enters the shelter will walk out with a new owner. The concept of a no-kill shelter that kills animals is a borderline deceptive trade practice.

The first no-kill I ever encountered did not kill any animals, in house. They shipped them out to a local vet and he killed them. So if the truth be known, their euthanasia rate was probably equal to everybody else’s.
Then there is the problem of actually getting an animal in to a actual no-kill. Every time I talk to a rescue group or organization that I know is actually a no-kill, they are full up and people are placed on a waiting list to get their animals in there. When a no-kill tells people they have space, all kinds of bells and whistles go off in my head.

Another issue is that when we opened our new facility somebody started a rumor that we were going to be no-kill. As a result, everybody wanted to bring their animals to the no-kill facility. I only have 12 total runs, and people would bring in 15 or 20 dogs on a given Saturday. More than once I had to close the shelter in the middle of the day to euthanize dogs to make space for the afternoon’s incoming.

We only accept animals from our city, and we have had people lie about where they found the animals to get them in to the no-kill facility. We have had people drive 50 miles only to be turned away trying to get their animal in to the no-kill facility. We have had people get very mad because they heard the rumor but never asked if we were no kill, so they lied about their address and brought feral kittens in, only to find out later that the kittens were euthanized.

During our first 3 years of operation out of the new facility, we set city records for the number of animals being euthanized every year, largely due to the rumor.
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  #34  
Old 07-02-2009
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We only accept animals from our city, and we have had people lie about where they found the animals to get them in to the no-kill facility. We have had people drive 50 miles only to be turned away trying to get their animal in to the no-kill facility. We have had people get very mad because they heard the rumor but never asked if we were no kill, so they lied about their address and brought feral kittens in, only to find out later that the kittens were euthanized.
We have had people bring animals from other cities as well and lie about where they lived. The ACOs always check the driver's license of the people bringing the animal in before accepting the animal/application. I have had people try this stunt with me as well, thinking that I am just the vet. so I would not know aobut the shelter's intake policy. Little did they know that I am an ACO as well and always ask the ACOs that I work with what their town's policies are regarding the shelter before I act.
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  #35  
Old 07-02-2009
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I also have a problem with the term No Kill, it discounts the lives of the sick and aggressive dogs as if they never existed.

I think they should be acknowledged as they did exist, they were a part of the animal community. So the term does not sit well with me.

I do a Q and A with the local paper and here was my response to the pieces of the rescue puzzle defined.

Open Admission Shelters: (Municipal Shelters) These shelters act as a huge funnel, never turning away an animal in need. These shelters receive a large number of animal intakes that are surrendered by owners or come in as strays. While the County agency is responsible for enforcement the shelter goes above and beyond in its rescue efforts by performing adoptions in the shelter and off site, having volunteer opportunities, as well as foster programs and community outreach.

Specific to DuPage County Shelter: All animals stay up for adoption until adopted.
DuPage County Animal Care and Control is not a tax funded agency.
DuPage County Animal Care and Control is the only “Open Admission” shelter in DuPage County.

Limited Access Shelters: (Humane Society’s) These shelters often help the overflow of adoptable animals from “Open Admission” Shelters. They also provide for owner surrendered animals but often ask the owner to participate in the re-homing of their pet The animal community is as complex and diverse as the variety of homeless animals it services and re-homes, so your confusion is warranted. Hopefully I can shed some light on the topic.

Shelters and rescues have shared common goals that consist of providing humane treatment and re-homing of the animals in their care, educating and providing resources for pet owners to stay committed to their pets, providing adoptable animals that are spayed/neutered and vaccinated.

I recommend you research the type of dog you have dreamed of and then investigate the traits of the breed to evaluate if those traits match your lifestyle. Even when looking at mixed breeds it is good to have some base knowledge of breed indicative traits. Examples would be Jack Russel Terriers high energy level and need for mental stimulation, or some large breed dogs like a rottweiler for instance who would rather sit at your feet and be pet then play fetch after their puppy stage of their life. Then begin by looking at your local shelters. Animals arrive daily and the variety to choose from might surprise you. You may also browse on-line at www.petfinder.com I recommend you restrict your search to your local area so to meet and greet your new best friend prior to adoption.

Below are the varied types of Shelters and Rescues defined to help you understand the terminology.

Each rescue and shelter provides for a specific niche that is needed locally. Whether it is Animal Control rescuing abandoned animals, or specific breeds needing individual attention, or the small animals you may not realize are abundant in shelters (rabbits, hamsters, ferrets, birds etc.) What is surprising at the end of the day is that we all exist on the same page, which is to find forever homes for the animals that find themselves homeless.




SHELTERS DEFINED:

by serving as a foster or being added to the waiting list of incoming animals.
Other Limited Access Shelters limit their intakes to the over flow of adoptable animals found at the open admission shelter.

No Kill Shelters: There are varied types of No Kill shelters. Many accept the overflow of highly adoptables from Open Admission Shelters, or take in owner surrenders. While others provide care to animals at risk that need extensive vet care or those that have behavior issues that require long term behavior modification and every combination in between.

Animal Sanctuaries: Sanctuaries typically do not perform adoptions, or provide for only a limited number of adoptions. Their approach is to provide quality care to the animals in most need (either for health or behavior issues) for the duration of their lives.

Animal Rescues: This network usually work through foster homes without having a physical shelter. These rescues range from breed specific (purebred animals) to all breed, or species specific rescue. They depend primarily on foster care the internet and off-site adoption events at local stores, fairs, to provide visibility for their animals to find forever homes.

Each one of these types of rescue serve an important role in the community.
Together we make a difference through partnerships, respect, cooperation and communication so that animals and people may benefit.

Any and all above will help you find that pet suited just for you, all you have to do is get started. Good luck finding that special dog.
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  #36  
Old 07-02-2009
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Originally Posted by ChicagoACOSupervisor View Post
So, why not be honest with the public, and ourselves, and actually call it what it is... "We will euthanize ONLY in cases where the animal is suffering, has a contagious communicable disease, or is of such a high level of aggressive that it is a threat to the public." I think THAT is what we want. I just strongly believe that is what we need to be telling the public, instead of using this misleading term, "No Kill".
And this is what no kill is. Animals that are sick/injured, agressive, going stir crazy in cages, food agression, are a few of the ways that an animal is not deemed adoptable, and would be humanly put to sleep, after all resources have been exhausted. No kill means that the shelter does not euth healthy sound/temperment animals for cage space. And the majority of the public agree with you, that if an animal is suffering, it should be humanly put too sleep.And it is funny that you mention about being honest with the public. I don't know how many times I have read on here, about a member of the public bringing in an animal and they leave and the staff euth right away.

The reason why shelters have a negative impact on the community, is because the majority of the public just thinks that shelters are going to put an animal down after the stray hold is up. And they are usually right. Then the shelters bitch when they do not get outside help. Maybe if the shelters were not so close minded and got found solutions to their excuses...the public would see and become for involved. Therefore making your shelter thirve.
I think we need to go from excuses to answers and blaming to solving.

Sunny
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Last edited by Sunny; 07-02-2009 at 04:36 PM.
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  #37  
Old 07-02-2009
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Sunny, most of the things you have mentioned about reasons to euthanize are condemned in redemption as reason enough.

Redemption's answers end with every statement condemning animal control
Cage crazy, get more fosters and do more dog enrichment
Aggressive dogs let the rescues be the judge and make every dog available to them regardless of risk if you don't it is the shelters fault
Communicable disease build an isolotion wing and what would classify as communicable (parvo,,,,or URI??)

Just like it isn't all of the public's fault you can't go to the opposite side of the spectrum and make it all of the shelters fault.

There are wonderful things going on in Animal Control and Animal Shelter, communities are growing into pet friendly places and this semantic war is detrimental to the cause as a whole and the terminology just perpetuates a good and evil perception to the public which isn't accurate.
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  #38  
Old 07-03-2009
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...this semantic war is detrimental to the cause as a whole and the terminology just perpetuates a good and evil perception to the public which isn't accurate.
Right on, DC. We have too much to do; if we divide the already too few people available into two camps (the "pie-in-the-sky no-killers" versus the "animal control Nazis," depending on your perspective), that leaves us with not enough people to get the work done. We all have strengths. We're all desperately needed. Isn't that enough? Do we have to get in each others' way like this?
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  #39  
Old 07-05-2009
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Originally Posted by Sunny View Post
And this is what no kill is. Animals that are sick/injured, agressive, going stir crazy in cages, food agression, are a few of the ways that an animal is not deemed adoptable, and would be humanly put to sleep, after all resources have been exhausted. No kill means that the shelter does not euth healthy sound/temperment animals for cage space. And the majority of the public agree with you, that if an animal is suffering, it should be humanly put too sleep.And it is funny that you mention about being honest with the public. I don't know how many times I have read on here, about a member of the public bringing in an animal and they leave and the staff euth right away.

But a member of the public believes that "no-kill" means exactly that....you DO NOT KILL IT! That is the problem I have with the term. I also believe that the private organizations use the ignorance of the public when they solicit for donations. "Hey, we are no-kill, so give us money, because without it, we cannot take care of the animals we have." Seriously, I have heard them say this to the public. And there is a MAJOR organization here in Chicago that uses this in their advertising, on their vehicles, even on the clothes they wear in the shelter and at adoption events, "Creating a no-kill Chicago".

Read that again from the perspective of the average Joe on the street. What would you think if you saw that?

I agree, most of the public...not all, but most would be perfectly accepting if we euth an animal that is suffering. So why can't we tell them that outright? Why drop a term that leads a layperson to believe it literally, that we will not euth an animal EVER?

The public already believe animal control to be the anti-christ in almost every case, so let's mislead them a little more to make us feel better about euthanizing an animal? Seems lacking of common sense to me.

Also..Sunny, your comment that you see on here that shelters euth an animal immediately after the public brings it to them. Yeah that is messed up, and every time it happens, it diminishes the public trust in every single one of us that wear an AC uniform. I have said those people need to be fired and prosecuted.

So yeah, we have some work to do as a profession, because being dishonest, on BOTH sides of the coin, is killing us!
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Old 07-05-2009
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Right on, DC. We have too much to do; if we divide the already too few people available into two camps (the "pie-in-the-sky no-killers" versus the "animal control Nazis," depending on your perspective), that leaves us with not enough people to get the work done. We all have strengths. We're all desperately needed. Isn't that enough? Do we have to get in each others' way like this?
I have been doing this for 11 years now, and it has ALWAYS been like this. AC vs Humane Organizations. And this is what I always hear....

AC is the anti-christ because they euthanize an animal on occassion and they do not throw every single owner who happened to not leave a bowl of water out, in jail for 10 years for cruelty.

HO's are the anti-christ because they lie to the public to get donations, and they are just animal hoarders anyways.

Can't we all just get along, and get with the frackin program for these animals??? UGH!
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