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« Four year old Texas boy dies from dog attack | Main | Pit Bulletin Legal News Radio »

January 22, 2013



What does this say for shelters where they don't even manage the first 50%?


Yeah, it essentially says they're not even trying.


I don't get why you are talking about "90%"

Why should any shelter invest resources in the top 10% (assuming that's honestly defined, which of course is the key) or force the next 5% to suffer? Those 2 categories define "no kill" as saving 85% not 90% or certainly not 95% as some tout.

Saving all the 85% that can/should be saved is an entirely laudable goal and a great achievement if accomplished. Again, assuming that the "chronically/severely challenged" animals are truly irredeemable as opposed to animals that could/should be placed in the "desirable with minor needs" category.. and those that are "pit bulls" automatically deemed to be unadoptable by some socalled "no kill" shelters.

If the goal is to save and find homes for all animals that CAN be saved, and if a shelter truly does that, it doesn't really matter what the actual percentage is. In management theory terms, the number or percentage saved is an "output". It's easily determined which is why people like to use it. But it doesn't really tell whether success is achieved. If a shelter receives 100 dogs of which 70 are truly too damaged to live and it find homes for the rest, it's only saved 30%. But it's achieved its "outcome" of saving all savable animals. And it should be judged by THAT measure not by the number alone.

Knowing the numbers, and being able to describe and categorize them as this chart does is extremely valuable. But it's not the end of understanding what success is.



In large part I agree. The goal is (or at least should be) to save all the ones that are savable, regardless of what that percentage is. No doubt that there are some shelters out there that are at 87/88% and are truly no kill, while I also know of some closed admission shelters that are at 95% and really shouldn't be killing anything (ie, why take it in if you're not going to save it?)

I personally like the "90%" goal though, as I think it's a solid benchmark that helps identify shelters that are declaring pit bulls, feral cats, animals with any medical issues at all (like Ringworm)etc "unadoptable" and then declaring themselves "no kill" of "adoptable" animals -- which is also BS. So I definitely think of the 90% as a benchmark, but not as a sole indicator.

As for the last 15% (and remember, these numbers are also just estimates and not scientific), I do think there are a fair number of those that are savable with some significant rehab (either physical or behavioral). I think Parvo pups fall in this category. But it's certainly not all are going to be savable, and many not without significant resource use.

And no, I'm not comfortable at all with the 95% being so easily thrown around. While this number may be achievable for some (as they have shown), I don't know that this is a very realistic number for the vast majority of open-admission shelters unless there becomes a significant increase in the number of rescues/sanctuaries that form to handle very challenging cases.


Some put cats with FIV (feline immunodeficiency virus) in the last (top) 10 percent category while others do not. Some places, including "rescue" groups still automatically have these cats killed, often based on their particular veterinarian's opinion.

While the cats will always be FIV positive, I believe they should be offered for adoption along with education so people can make an informed decision. Automatically killing pets who are not suffering who may live a normal life seems outdated.


Agree completely two cents...

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