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Natural Awakenings Philadelphia

Putting a Stop to Euthenasia

Feb 06, 2018 11:25AM

More than a dozen animal welfare organizations in Philadelphia have formed a no-kill coalition, with the mission of ultimately attaining 100 percent safe placement of healthy and treatable pets. The city was making impressive progress. In 2017, 82 percent of cats and dogs entering the city's animal control shelter survived; In 2005, only 11 percent survived.

Funded in part by a $178,000 grant from PetSmart, the coalition hopes to not only find homes for more animals that are brought to shelters, but also keep them from being surrendered in the first place. The group will set up a help desk inside animal control to counsel people bringing in unwanted cats and dogs. They'll offer advice on behavior issues and access to low-cost veterinary care and pet food if those are the reasons an animal is being turned in to the shelter.

"If you're willing to keep your pet, we're here to work with you," says Samantha Holbrook, president of Citizens for a No-Kill Philadelphia, one of the groups that is part of the new coalition. "We're a big city and we have a lot of animals, a tight budget and a lot of impoverished areas," Holbrook points out, all things that will make this no-kill effort a challenge. But with the help of grants, donations, volunteers and national exposure, they hope to make it work and become a role model for others.

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