Shelter Euthanasia Rates

by epjdog • Posted in: Awareness/ PR

dog that was euthanized today

dog that was euthanized today

In the Statesman today (

there is a very short blurb about Town Lake Animal Center and the Animal Advisory Commission with a link  to Austin Pets Alive!  There was a heartbreaking picture of a dog that was euthanized today.    I hate to show it to you but it is what we see everyday and it is what keeps us moving FAST to get to No Kill.

Last night, I walked the euthanasia list with our normal volunteers (who are amazing beyond words).  I can’t tell you how hard that was to walk by the cages of these dogs (I couldn’t bring myself to even look at the cats) and know they were going to die before noon the next day.  We had to leave 2 dogs and a  family of cats behind to die (one dog was pictured, the others not).  In the summer the list will be as long as 75 animals each day…

Why did we leave these dogs?  I will tell you exactly:

  1. We don’t have enough adoption sites to hold more big dogs (we need a vehicle to open another one which will save 8-15 dogs a week).
  2. These dogs needed a little training (we need a facility so that we can hold them long enough to go through “3 day boot camp”) before going out to offsite adoptions.

Why did we leave these cats?

  1. They had a nonfatal form of upper respiratory infection (the human cold equivalent) and needed 2 weeks to recover.  We don’t have enough fosters that can keep sick cats away from personal cats.
  2. We don’t have a building to house them in case of no fosters.

It hurts to think that time, fosters, a vehicle, or a building is all that is standing between life and death for these animals.  It hurts even more to know that tonight there was another list and more animals that we had to leave behind.  And tomorrow night and the next….

Please Austin, help us get to the point where we are saving 90%.   We are so proud of being able to save 10% of the list each night but that does little to ease the pain of the leaving the others behind.

We know what we need to do to save these animals, we just need the support (financial, volunteer, and foster) to get it done.

6 Responses to "Shelter Euthanasia Rates"

  1. Winograd Fansays: January 15, 2009 at 12:51 pm

    It is nice that you are trying to do the shelter’s work for them, but we (the taxpayers of Austin) are paying the Assistant Shelter Director’s enormous salary. One would think that instead of using the taxpayer funded Chameleon software to track rescues they didn’t like, harassing rescuers, refusing to work with most rescues, etc, they could be using some of that time to think of creative ways to keep animals alive instead of killing (not euthanizing – KILLING) them.

    I think some of you were at Nathan’s presentation and know what needs to be done. Get rid of Dorinda.

    You’ll find few, if any, cats at TLAC that don’t have URI. They get exposed to it the second they hit the door, along with coronavirus and other various nasties that live in that filthy place.

  2. Pet Loversays: January 15, 2009 at 3:20 pm

    I think that getting these animals out alive NOW is the key. If you wait for shelter policies and procedures to change drastically you are in for a long wait. And while we are waiting, animals are dying.
    Rescuing them is the only way out for them today and that is what Austin Pets Alive is focused on.
    Even though taxes are going to TLAC, I don’t think that means that people wouldn’t dig into their pockets to help save the lives of these animals.

  3. Linda Schmidtsays: January 15, 2009 at 6:37 pm

    I am amazed that there are no kill facilities—-I understand that you can only do what you can and what you do is a wonderful thing. I live in washington state, but do daily check your website to read about the dogs and cats that you rescue. Still in all this state has a no kill in effect—-the only time a animal is put down is if it is dangerous to the community or if it shows aggression when tested. Is your state even considering this?

  4. rroberts19says: January 15, 2009 at 8:33 pm

    This is so sad, I commend you for being able to walk “death row” each night, its a necessary task that most of us probably couldn’t handle. Keep up the good fight!

  5. Winograd Fansays: January 17, 2009 at 11:25 am

    Hi Pet Lover,

    I certainly didn’t mean rescue wasn’t important – I do rescue myself – but we’re one of the many unwashed hordes that Dorinda doesn’t allow to pull from “her” shelter. So we will be going to a different high kill shelter in Central Texas. We don’t have as much money or as many volunteers as APA does so we will only be able to save 2 animals today, and the rest will likely die. I will leave crying.

  6. Quinn R.says: March 1, 2009 at 11:18 pm

    I am from WA too and i love MOST of our no kill laws. Yes I do think that people should reconsider killing every animal in their path without like you said, considering not killing them all.