Animal control & rescue

From ANIMAL PEOPLE, November 1996:

Of 1,561 animals surrendered by owners
to the Orlando Humane Society in May and
June, 1,071 were surrendered for the overlapping
reasons “can’t keep,” “landlord won’t allow,” and
“moving/lost job.” Just 734 were surrendered for
the also overlapping reasons “originally stray,”
“too many,” and “unwanted litter.” The only
other reasons for surrender cited significantly
often, among 36 choices, were “can’t care for,”
cited 288 times, and “owner request put to sleep,”
cited 204 times, probably chiefly in connection
with sick or injured animals. In balance, changes
of owner circumstance causing an animal to lose a
home would appear to be far more frequent than
cases of surplus. Since the end of May and beginning
of June are the months in which the most people
relocate, the importance of change of circumstance
in owner surrender may have been magnified
during the survey period––but even if it was,
the numbers indicate that programs aimed at keeping
animals in homes, especially rental homes,
now have as much potential to lower animal shelter
intakes and euthanasias as programs aimed at preventing
surplus births.

The Humane Society of the Desert, in
North Palm Springs, California, on September 19
announced it would compile a list of pet-friendly
rentals and publish a Letter of Agreement to reduce
conflicts between petkeepers and landlords.
The American Humane Association on
October 15 unveiled a 75-foot Emergency Animal
Relief semi-trailer, donated by board member
Connor Michael, a truckdriver for 22 years, who
will continue to do the driving. The $225,000
vehicle is designed to take up to 10 disaster relief
workers and all their food and equipment to the
scene of any calamity, house them and the animals
they rescue, and serve as a mobile neutering clinic
in between. It tows a Ford Explorer animal rescue
ambulance and two rubber boats.
State veterinarian Thomas Howard
estimates that only 30-35% of Wisconsin dogs are
licensed, a view backed by the Green Bay PressG
a z e t t e, which found that of 18 people fined in
municipal courts for dog-related offenses over a
three-month period, only one had a licensed dog.
Recognizing a lack of veterinary care
available to low-income petkeepers, the Animal
Rescue League, of Washington D.C., opened the
subsidized Washington Animal Medical Center in
March. Despite doubling the staff to two fulltime
and two part-time vets, director Sam Rosenfeld
says, the hospital still has a long waiting list for
routine appointments. “We are planning for additional
space for surgery and a recuperation room,”
he told Linda Wheeler of The Washington Post.
The Anne Arundel County SPCA, of
Annapolis, Maryland, is building $200,000 Oiled
Wildlife Rescue Facility, to be staffed in event of
a major oil spill on Chesapeake Bay by 600
already trained volunteers.
Tips on handling animal control job
burnout and “How to promote your animal control
mission via radio” are available from John Seales,
director of Hot Springs Animal Services, 319
Davidson Drive, Hot Springs, AR 71901. Chip
in a buck each for printing and postage.
Since John Baird became chief dog
warden in Cleveland in 1994, dog pickups are up
68%, adoptions are up 77%, and complaints about
strays fell from 25,335 in 1993 to 12,487 in 1995.
Cleveland animal control records date to 1836,
when the city instituted its first dog tax to compensate
owners of dog-mauled livestock.
The Humane Society of the Ozarks, in
Fayetteville, Arkansas, has offered $100,000 in
cash and in-kind services toward the cost of building
Washington County’s first animal shelter.
The Humane Society of Pulaski
County, Arkansas, wants to build a $1.5 million
new shelter on the 3.5-acre site it has occupied
since 1978, a former chinchilla farm, but 160
neighbors, unconvinced that moving the dog runs
indoors will solve a chronic noise problem, have
signed a petition asking the society to relocate.
The Washington County Humane
S o c i e t y, in Polk, Wisconsin, in late August
opened a $500,000 new shelter. At 10,000 square
feet, it’s only slightly bigger than the old 8,900-
square-foot facility, but has 150 cages, with separate
dog and cat areas. The old shelter had just 100
cages, with dogs and cats in the same room.
The Animal Welfare Association, of
Voorhees, New Jersey, in a September cost-cutting
measure closed the wildlife shelter it has operated
in nearby Vincentown since 1988.
The Concord Animal Shelter in
C o n c o r d, New Hampshire, recently learned the
value of single-animal appeals: an appeal on
behalf of one cocker spaniel who needed ear
surgery raised the cost of helping 21 more animals.
The Coastal Humane Society, of
Brunswick, Maine, was to reopen October 22
after a two-week quarantine to contain an outbreak
of parvo virus––which hit in the midst of fundraising
to make $480,000 worth of improvements to
help prevent the spread of disease in the shelter.
Getting back to basics, the Los
Angeles Department of Animal Regulation
recently formed a four-member team just to catch
stray dogs––the original departmental task. The
new unit caught 274 strays in its first month.
The Kroger Co., Heinz Pet Food,
Purina, Kal Kan, Trailblazer, and Dad’s, rallied
by Kroger’s executive Bill Parker, on October
11 saved the destitute Capital Area Humane
Society, of Columbus, Ohio, with gifts of
$40,000 cash and $7,000 in supplies. A week earlier
the board cut seven senior positions and
imposed $31,000 in pay cuts to save $250,000––
barely enough to pay bills and ensure cash flow.
Escambia County, Florida, is at work
on a 15,000-square-foot shelter with 105 dog runs,
replacing the current 8,300-square-foot shelter,
which has 38 dog runs.
Laura Wool, former Auburn University
director of Alumni Services, has been named
executive director of the Montgomery County
Humane Society in Montgomery, Alabama.
Jacquie Bullette asks people who are
willing to mail preprinted post cards in protest
against conditions at an overcrowded Brazilian nokill
shelter to contact her at POB 483, Flushing,
NY 11372-0483.

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