Saturday, April 3, 2010

What No Kill Can Mean to a Dog

A picture:

Yeah, that's Dustin. He's got a tongue a mile long. Also, that's him in the back of his brand-new car as he heads on to his brand-new home.

You see, Dustin has spent his entire 3 years of existence at the Humane Society of Greater Kansas City. No one wanted to adopt him. Can you believe it? He's like adorable and, that tongue!

Dustin is one of several dogs and cats who got a bit of extra press coverage and now will spend the rest of his life with a human family.

No, I don't want to see shelters warehouse dogs indefinitely. But I'm tired of this animal shelter paradigm that demands we kill animals instead of giving them an acceptable level of care in a shelter until a home can be found. Does Dustin look like he would be better alive or dead? Does he look like he is suffering, that he has been irremediably damaged from living 3 years in a shelter? I don't think so.

Now there are dogs who do not thrive in a shelter. And maybe there are no foster homes available or rescues to take them. A good shelter has a bevy of volunteers who can mentally and physically stimulate or gently calm the dogs. They can provide enrichment and do everything in their power to make that dog's life better. Then they can focus on finding that particular dog a home. Very few dogs are so damaged by an acceptable quality of life that the only alternative is killing them.

The Humane Society of Greater Kansas City has some other animals in need of a new home. Give them one!

This is Turner and he is also all tongue but unrelated to Dustin. He's been at the shelter for sixteen months. He'd like to fetch balls in your backyard. Tennis, soccer, basketball, it doesn't matter.

Hey people, this is Gilmore. He's a distinguished gentleman and has been at the shelter for 14 months. He would like to give you this woe is me look five million times a day. He'll greet you like this in the morning, over breakfast, during lunch, on his walks, and right before you go to bed. You will melt from this look and wonder why on earth you adopted this dog. Then he will put his head on your lap and all doubt will disappear. Gilmore has that kind of power. He is that kind of dog.

Meet other adoptable animals here

These dogs and cats deserve a no-kill nation.

1 comment:

Pibble said...

WOW! What adorable mugs! They'll find homes, I just know it. With those faces? Oh, yeah, they will.

Good for you, Dustin. Someone finally saw your beauty and playfulness, and, well, that tongue!

A lot of people argue that holding on to an animal means other dogs or cats are dying. But how do you offer the chance of life to an animal, then one day essentially change your mind because X amount of time has passed? Could you say that to Dustin, who is otherwise healthy and happy, because his time is up? I know I couldn't.