Spay/Neutering Programs Reduce Animal Suffering
The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) estimates that animal shelters care for 6-8 million dogs and cats in the United States each year, of which 3-4 million are euthanized. In Georgia approximately 250,000 cats and dogs were euthanized in 2007, or about 685 every day – and unfortunately this numberis estimated to have risen sharply in recent years due to the poor economy.
Animal Shelter Statistics
- There are about 5000 animal shelters nationwide and 167 in Georgia
- 5 million companion animals enter into shelters nationwide each year
- 3.5 million companion animals are euthanized annually at shelters
- 60% of dogs in animal shelters are euthanized
- 70% of cats in animal shelters are euthanized
- 2% of cats in shelters are returned to their owners
- 15% of dogs in shelters are returned to their owners
- 78% of dogs are reported NOT to be spayed or neutered
- 88% of cats are reported NOT to be spayed or neutered
- 10% of animals that end up in a shelter are spayed or neutered
- 20% of dogs brought to shelters are adopted
- 25% of all dogs and cats are adopted from shelters
- 6% of all dogs and cats are bought from pet stores
- 65% of people get their pets free or at low cost
- $2 billion of taxpayer money is spent annually to round up, house, kill and dispose of homeless animals
In the U.S. there is no federal oversight or regulation of animal shelters, but many states do regulate the shelters within their jurisdiction. One of the earliest comprehensive state laws was the Georgia Animal Protection Act of 1986. The GAP Act was enacted in response to the inhumane treatment of companion animals by an Atlanta pet store chain. The Act provided for the licensing and regulation of pet shops, stables, kennels, and animal shelters, and established for the first time minimum standards of care.
As part of the law, the Georgia Department of Agriculture is tasked with licensing animal shelters and enforcement through the Department’s Animal Protection Division, which was created as part of the GAP Act. Georgia become the first state to mandate the use of intravenous injection of sodium pentothal in place of gas chambers and other less humane euthanization methods in 1990 with the passage of the Humane Euthanasia Act, and regulations were further expanded and strengthened with the passage of the Georgia Animal Protection Act of 2000.
Prevention is the Best Medicine
Many of the estimate 5000 animal shelters nationwide (there are an estimated 167 shelters and humane societies in GA) have redefined their role since the 1990s. No longer serving as an until-death repository for strays and drop-offs, modern shelters have taken the lead in controlling the pet population, promoting pet adoption, and studying shelter animals’ health and behavior. Shelters, and shelter-like volunteer organizations, respond to cat overpopulation with trap-neuter-release programs that reduced feral cat populations and reduced the burden on shelters.
SNAP is one of these organizations dedicated to helping stabilise and control pet populations through a combination of Trap/Neuter/Release, or TNR programs + making Low-cost Spay/Neutering widely available + Adoption Services + Education and Community Outreach.
SNAP was started in 2009 and is a 501c3 non-profit organization. As such, all of our funding goes to supporting our efforts and programs for TNR programs, Spay/Neuter programs, Adoption Services and Community Awareness and Education programs.
SNAP is committed to all these important approaches as a means of helping to stabilize our cat and dog populations nationwide and is dedicated to working tirelessly to provide the best humane treatment and management possible for our area homeless animal populations.
And the Work Continues
SNAP has sought out and partnered with dozens of area veterinarians who have graciously donated their time and often money to help provide low-cost and sometimes free veterinary care and spay/neuter services. The veterinarians, our volunteers and financial supporters are the real heroes behind SNAP, and we are grateful to them all for all there tremendous efforts through the years.
We believe passionately that prevention is more humane and more cost effective. Since 2009 we have grown as an organization and saved many lives – all through the generous support of our donors and the tireless efforts of our volunteers.
SNAP is a non-profit 501c3 animal rescue organization dedicated to rescues, adoptions and spay and neutering programs for Atlanta-area pets. See more about us here or follow us on Facebook for the latest updates on SNAP people, pets and adoption news.