Last Summer, City Dogs Rescue, joined with several other organizations to encourage Cleveland County Animal Control to drastically change its adoption policies and practices and to end the gassing of unwanted pets. City Dogs Rescue experienced a number of difficulties with working with CCAC at the time, including one particular incident involving CDR's unsuccessful attempts to rescue a sweet dog named Luna. After this incident, CDR submitted a presentation to the County Commissioners outlining our concerns and suggested actions (see Blog Post). After reviewing the presentation, County Commissioner Susan Allen reached out to us and has been very responsive to our concerns. Based upon Commissioner Allen's review of the situation with Luna and similar situations involving other rescues, the Commissioners determined that changes were needed at the shelter. Commissioner Allen expressed a sincere interest in having the shelter be more accessible to rescue and in reducing the shelter's euthanasia rate.
A number of changes were implemented immediately:
1. CCAC hired an internal rescue coordinator.
2. CCAC implemented several safeguards to try to prevent breakdowns in communication from occurring.
As a result of these changes, CDR continued to rescue dogs from CCAC but at an increased rate. Since May 2013, CDR rescued over 80 dogs from CCAC, including the sweet Dixie pictured above (who is still available for adoption at http://www.citydogsrescuedc.org/dogs.html#.U0sdPcdqnv4). Many other rescues worked to get dogs as well. (Since CCAC is a rural county, it must rely on rescues rather than internal adoptions for the bulk of its animals to be saved).
CCAC just released its euthanasia statistics, and boy what a change one year makes!
Animal shelter statistics in 2012 vs. 2013
Animals adopted: 6%, 8%
Animals rescued: 8%, 46%
Total cats saved: 3.5%, 37.5%
Total dogs saved: 31%, 80%
Total animals saved: 18%, 59%
Total animals euthanized: 79%, 37% (a 42% decrease)
Animals euthanized by carbon monoxide: 64%, 36%
Animals euthanized by injection: 36%, 64%
Now, with even more exciting news, CCAC has agreed to remove the gas chamber by June 30, 2014 and increase adoption hours! This is absolutely huge and we could not be more thrilled to see the end to this inhumane method of killing unwanted animals. See Shelby Star Article and the video below.
But CCAC has not stopped there! It also wants to adopt a program to vaccinate dogs and cats upon intake. By doing so, it can potentially eliminate the unnecessary suffering and death of animals from Parvo, Distempter, and other easily preventable diseases. CCAC estimates that the cost to provide these vaccinations is $44,970.26 on an annual basis (see breakdown of costs under "Photos Section"), but it does not have these expenses in its budget. As a THANK YOU to CCAC for implementing these wonderful changes and to prevent unnecessary suffering and death, CDR wants to raise at least $2500 so we can to help these animals get vaccinated. Vaccinations for Rabies, Parvo, and Distemper that are administered at the shelter can prevent unnecessary suffering and death. Sadly, City Dogs Rescue has had several of our dogs, including Jett, Sunshine, Octavio, Shotgun, Woodstock, and Vince, succumb to diseases that could have been prevented if vaccinations were available at the shelter.
City Dogs Rescue & City Kitties volunteers.