Knowledge Reveals Improve in Canine, Cats Euthanized in US Shelters

Press launch: Greatest Buddies Animal Society

Greatest Buddies Animal Society, the main animal welfare group working to finish the killing of cats and canines in shelters by 2025, just lately launched newly collected data displaying that for the primary time in 5 years, U.S. shelter methods are seeing a setback in lifesaving. In 2021, the variety of canines and cats killed in U.S. shelters elevated from 347,000 to 355,000 and was particularly stark when in comparison with the dramatic lifesaving efforts seen all through the earlier yr. 


“Unfortunately, the setback in lifesaving is largely due to the historic decreases in pets entering shelters in 2020,” mentioned Julie Fortress, CEO of Greatest Buddies Animal Society. “As shelters began to reopen in 2021 in increasing numbers, so did the number of pets entering their facilities. Over the course of 2021, shelters saw an 8.1 percent increase in intake, and sadly, the number of pet adoptions could not keep pace with the increased intake.” 

The shift was much more dramatic for canines than cats, as canine consumption elevated by practically 3 times the speed of canine adoptions. Regardless of this, cats stay probably the most at-risk animals in shelters being killed at twice the speed of canines.   

Extra statistics from the 2021 dataset: 


  • Shelters are working onerous to avoid wasting lives. Although consumption went up by 8.1 %, the variety of canines and cats killed elevated by simply 2.3 %. 
  • The nationwide save price for canines and cats in shelters is at 83 %, representing a 77 % discount in canines and cats killed in shelters since 2017, when Greatest Buddies first begin monitoring this knowledge. 
  • 5 states make up fifty % of the general variety of canines and cats killed in 2021 (Texas, California, North Carolina, Florida and Alabama). 
  • Greater than half of all U.S. shelters at the moment are no-kill in comparison with 22.5 % in 2017, and the variety of no-kill counties within the U.S. went up 33 % over the past 5 years.*  
  • New Hampshire and Delaware sustained their no-kill standing, whereas Rhode Island, North Dakota and Vermont wanted to avoid wasting lower than 100 animals every to succeed in no-kill. 

As general lifesaving stalls, Greatest Buddies’ knowledge reveals the animal shelter disaster in America rising with growing intakes and waning adoptions. Nevertheless, the group is seeing nice success with modern and focused packages like Greatest Buddies’ shelter collaborative, which pairs no-kill shelters with shelters that need assistance. Different packages proving to be extremely efficient embrace cat lifesaving programming, inclusive adoption insurance policies, and advocacy work round pet housing restrictions. Shelters that engaged with Greatest Buddies in at the least considered one of these packages saved greater than two occasions the variety of lives between 2016 and 2021 than unengaged shelters. 

“The responsibility of saving pets’ lives should not rest solely on shelters and those in animal welfare, but on entire communities including community members, government leaders, shelters and other animal welfare groups,” mentioned Fortress. “Through collaboration and community involvement, this model provides better support for pet owners, efficiency in shelters, and more lifesaving outcomes for pets. When a community supports its shelter’s critical needs, we see dramatic results.”   


People may also help save lives by selecting to undertake from a shelter or rescue group, spay or neuter their pets, foster, volunteer, donate and assist and advocate for group cats by trap-neuter-vaccinate-return (TNVR) and shelter-run TNVR programming. 

For the previous six years, Greatest Buddies has spearheaded a one-of-a-kind in depth knowledge assortment course of that concerned coordinated outreach to each shelter in America adopted by further analysis, knowledge evaluation, and expertise growth. The dataset is probably the most complete on U.S. sheltered animals, and is predicated on knowledge collected immediately from shelters, state and native coalitions, authorities web sites, and FOIA requests. From this, 94 % of the animal consumption in U.S. shelters is thought, 6 % is estimated.  



*A 90 % save price is the nationally acknowledged benchmark to be thought-about “no-kill,” factoring that roughly 10 % of pets who enter shelters have medical or behavioral circumstances that warrant humane euthanasia somewhat than killing for lack of house.  

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