“No-kill” policies often do more harm than good in ending the cycle of companion-animal homelessness….
PETA says that when shelters become no-kill without addressing the root cause of the problem they make things worse because cats and dogs die an unpleasant death rather than being euthanised. They die an unpleasant death because of various reasons such as:
- Animals turned away at the door will be shot, for example.
- The animals still die but painfully. For instance in San Antonio, Texas, 12,000 cats were killed on the roads. It has been called “euthanasia by proxy” – an alternative but less humane form of euthanasia
- Animals spend ages in cages at no-kill shelters where they deteriorate psychologically and become difficult to adopt. Or they die of diseases.
- Animals are handed to abusers and hoarders. We know about these. These are fraudulent independent cat rescuers who are really animal abusers. Westberry comes to mind. Note: most are decent people. The Westberry types are rare I believe.
PETA says that no-kill shelters make matters worse. Of course there is a lot of truth in what they say but in saying it they are promoting kill shelters. At the same time not enough attention is being paid to solving the problem at source: stopping unwanted breeding and poor cat ownership.
If kill-shelters are indirectly supported as they appear to be by PETA we have an equally bad situation. This is because in euthanising, in large numbers, cats at shelters the shelters inadvertently create an outlet for unwanted cats which lets irresponsible breeding and ownership off the hook. Kill-shelters mop up the mess of the source of the problem which takes the pressure off clearing the problem up.
There needs to be a major catastrophe for people to become seriously concerned about tackling the production of unwanted cats.
Humans only react to something when it affects them directly. For instance if global warming was so bad that we were all running out of water and dying then we’d do something about it but as “global warming” is a sound bite hardly felt by anyone people brush it under the carpet and carry on as normal.
If many of the unwanted cats and dogs are conveniently got rid of at shelters through euthanasia then we mask the source of the problem or it becomes less of a problem and therefore it continues and no one does anything about it which is why PETA is not entirely correct about no-kill shelter policies.
See PETA’s page.
P.S. Kill-shelters are mostly engaged in killing and not euthanasia as the cats they kill are healthy. PETA did not mention that.