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Pet Underpopulation?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
I would like to hear opinions about this.

http://spanieljournal.com/33lbaughan.html

There is also a link on that page about the new book "Redemption: The Myth of Pet Overpopulation and the No Kill Revolution in America"

Personally I do think we have a cat overpopulation but I am not so sure about dogs. My reasons are 7thousand+ cats are euthanized in 2 local counties in my area. I am constantly seeing "Free Kittens" signs, and the kitten I rescued this last year took months to find it a good home.

Now for dogs when I volunteered for a local shelter, I was looking for a puppy. Every time the shelter got puppies in they seemed to be adopted out just as fast. I ended up getting my puppy from a breeder. I also know that one year the euthanasia statistics for puppies was 6! Yes only 6 puppies from a shelter that euthanizes thousands of cats/kittens.

Is it possible we don't have a pet overpopulation?
post #2 of 21
I think there IS a problem of overpopulation in both cats and dogs. However, they don't seem to be counting in the fact there are a ton of "rescue groups" for breeds out there. Maybe people don't take them to the pounds/shelters to be put down, but find a rescue group.

And the rescue groups find homes for those that would have been put down and increase the statistics of the shelters.
post #3 of 21
Perhaps it is that we don't have an overpopulation of PUPPIES.

How many older dogs did you walk by in the shelters without giving them a second look, because you were looking for a puppy at the time rather than a dog who needs a home?

I would think that a lack of puppies might show that getting the word out to folks about spaying and neutering may actually be having an effect.

Additionally, there are millions of feral cats out there that are breeding, because uncaring people dump cats, or let their cats be indoor/outdoor but don't bother to spay/neuter them.

Generally, you don't see wild packs of dogs living down by the docks, or under the porch of a factory, or in an alley behind a business. But you DO see all too many feral cat colonies.

So it isn't a myth - it's about PERCEPTION, and the difference between the species and the way that the human population treats them.
post #4 of 21
I agree Gingermom if you go in looking for puppies of course you are gonna see less in the shelter. Because when they do show up they are adopted quicker because everyone wants the cute puppy not the older dog.

This on Petfinder. This only the shelters and/or rescues listed on that site. There are many many more that are not listed.

On their site there is 162,425 dogs listed for adoption through shelters or rescues. That does not seem like an under population. Plus I always see free dogs listed in our local papers.
post #5 of 21
Consider the source of this article. The magazine is all about "gun" dogs, hunting, and breeding of these dogs. Take a look at the list of books that are reviewed - it's all about the same thing.

I am disappointed in Nathan Winograd - to my knowledge he's always been a champion of homeless animals. I don't know what possessed him to write such a book. He obviously hasn't been to my neck of the woods. The shelters are busting at the seams with *local* animals, not imported ones. Maybe he, and the author of that article in Spaniel Journal should go to my county shelter on euthanasia day and tell them that overpopulation is just a myth.

I agree with a previous poster that grass roots rescue groups are not being counted. Have you ever known of a local rescue group who was actively looking for homeless animals to care for because there's a shortage of such animals? It doesn't happen.

Not to take into account the thousands of rescue organizations and private individuals (like me) who take care of feral cats is ludicrous. Feral cats are cats first, feral second and their vast numbers should not be dismissed.
post #6 of 21
I'm one of those people that would walk in the pound and bypass the puppies in favor of the adult dogs. While I love puppies, they require a lot of work/training and I don't have the time to do that.

So we looked for an adult dog that had basic training and was out of that puppy "hellion" stage

That's why we love Keno even if she was abused - the abuse actually makes training her a lot faster She was 14 months when we got her - she will be 5 yrs old this coming September.
post #7 of 21
Come work a day at the shelter i work for and you'll see there is definifely as much as a dog overpopulation in this part of the country as there is a cat one. We have had to make some pretty tough choices in the past few months off and on from getting soooo overcrowded at times. We have been sooo very blessed this past month to be able to team up with a WONDERFUL pit bull rescue out of NJ that is now talking all of our adoptable pits and transporting them up north to rehome them in wonderful screened homes. We also work with KY Lab Rescue and they take the majority of our labs, there is a Rottie rescue and a great pyranese rescue that takes those breeds from us as well. Another good thing -our secretary founded our local Golden Retriever Rescue chapter (she is retired from it now) so ALL of our goldens that come in get to go to GR rescue and they're just amazing! I also have been working my butt off lately to get us hooked up with an exotic rescue and have recently found one that has agreed to take all exotics/hybrids That is WONDERFUL for us- that means more animals have a chance at life. Shelters have to be willing to work with other reputable shelters and rescues to move animals into good homes. It works out best all the way around.

The mixes though, many of them are considered "undesirable" by the people that come into our shelter looking for cute little tiny dogs- well the majority of our dogs are large mostly black dogs- what everyone seems to NOT want We do get small dogs in often though, and puppies- omg we've been swimming in them lately. Just last week we had 15 at the shelter and even more in foster homes. So i encourage those who think there is not an overpopulation of dogs around the country to visit more shelters/rescues. There is a huge problem. The good thing about my shelter i work for is that we have a pretty good adoption rate- not every shelter is blessed that way and things change on an hour to hour basis...you never know what you're going to get in.

I also highly recommend to those who want purebreed dogs to PLEASE check your shelters first before you buy from a breeder. We get SOOOOOOOO many purebreeds in it's insane! Shitzus, Golden Retrievers,Great Pyranese, Labs, Pits, Cocker Spaniels, Chichuahas, Spitz, French Bulldogs (we have one named Bowser right now), Daschounds, Bassets, Beagles,Chow Chows, Akitas, GSD's, Huskeys, Laso's, ....you name we've likely had it. We get just as many purebreeds in at our shelter as we do mixes. Most people don't realize that.

I encourage anyone who does not believe there is a dog overpopulation to visit shelters and rescues - mine is one of them and we certainly are constantly bombareded by dogs and puppies.

As others have posted- the MINUTE we get a puppy in at our shelter most times, they get adopted ones they're spayed/neutered and ready to go. They do not stick around in most cases- puppies go very quickly- so just because you may not see them does not mean we do not get them- you just have to check often. Same with small dogs- min pins and chichuahs, and daschounds and small breeds like that fly out of our shelter most of the time.
post #8 of 21
I can't believe anyone can say their isn't a pet overpopulation. 2007 was an excellent year for Albuquerque Animal Care and control. They only euthanized 44% of the animals they took in. That is 44% of 27,000 animals

That is euthanizing 11880 in 2007, just under 250 animals a week.
ABQ is a city of only approximately 500,000 people and yet they euth 250 dogs and cats a week. Just think of those numbers across the nation.

As for puppies, here is a link to a friends photobucket pics. She lives in New Orleans east. She currently has a litter of feral puppies. Momma was a daughter of a junkyard dog that it took her months to befriend. Momma got hit by a car and was found dead in the road. Daddy was killed by the feral pack in the area.

http://s242.photobucket.com/albums/f...In%20Junkyard/
post #9 of 21
I had the extreme pleasure of meeting Nathan Winograd when he came to town to promote his new book "Redemption: The Myth of Pet Overpopulation and the No Kill Revolution in America". I helped run the book signing and lecture so had the chance to talk with him for about an hour before his lecture. The article says that he is "spots on" with his opinion, yet the author of the article then contradicted the points he made in his book.

I have also put rescue groups in the Denver area in touch with rescue groups in Kansas City. Denver is a more pet-friendly city and some of the more desired dog breeds are underpopulated in shelters. I helped to arrange the transfer of some breeds from Kansas City, where they are overpopulated, to Denver. I suspect the areas in Wisconsin quoted in the article are similar to Denver.

Over population is somewhat of a myth, but not based on the hype stated in this article. Mismanagement within many humane societies is real, and actually causes a lot of unnecessary euthanasia. They use the overpopulation argument to rationalize their mismangement and justify killing animals.

Bottle line: this is counter hype to animal extreme groups. They've misconstrued their message as much as extreme groups misconstrue their message.

Nathan's book is outstanding and for a more fact based view of the argument, I suggest that you read it, and not the propoganda coming out of any extreme group.
post #10 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by KTLynn View Post
I am disappointed in Nathan Winograd - to my knowledge he's always been a champion of homeless animals. I don't know what possessed him to write such a book. He obviously hasn't been to my neck of the woods. The shelters are busting at the seams with *local* animals, not imported ones. Maybe he, and the author of that article in Spaniel Journal should go to my county shelter on euthanasia day and tell them that overpopulation is just a myth.
Please read the book. The article did not support Nathan's views.
post #11 of 21
OK.....I have 2 dogs at my house, another is in foster care, 2 PUREBRED shih tzus are in foster care....yet we don't have a pet overpopulation issue?!?

We have 2 purebred Wheatens, more to come....2 purebred Shih Tzus, a purebred Pomeranian....something like 10 puppies(husky mixes, rott mix, beagle/lab mixes), in addition to 4 black lab puppies ranging from 4-6 months, a Dobie, two or three pit mixes, a coonhound mix, a husky/shep mix, two labs around a year old-one yellow/one black...a springer spaniel mix, lab/husky mix, basset mix...I know I'm missing one or two in there.... Oh and a waiting list for dogs & cats a mile long!

Cats, we've got something like 70-ish of those. This time last year we had 27 cats, capacity is 35.

Spaying & neutering isn't going far enough for us! I realize that this'll fall in the "rural area" category there....but it's hard to place mixed breed dogs when there are a few "kennels" in the area that sell mixed breed puppies (small & large) for $50....that's our adoption fee.

I sat crying Monday knowing a cat I loved died....all because someone didn't spay/neuter....and we can't afford to help them all when they need more than "average" vet care. Squishy...he'd be dead simply because there are so many homeless cats.
post #12 of 21
This article was the biggest load of crap that I have ever read. Someone should make that person go into the euthanasia room at Southwest Humane Society on a 100 pet intake day. So they can truly see first hand how "under pet populated" the United States truly is! What a moron.
post #13 of 21
Those statistics from Tufts in the link show that 5 million pets are still being euthanized. That still is too many.
I agree that there are more cats than dogs from my limited experience. I do know that the feral cats in Golden Gate Park have severely reduced the bird population. There is a group who capture, fix and release or adopt to keep the population down.
I am going to read Nathan Winograd's book. I know that the SF SPCA does a good job, but if he is with the Tompkins County Shelter now, he is in a different situation. The largest city in the county is Ithaca, NY where Cornell and Ithaca College are located. You have a population of students, most of whom cannot bring/own pets and of professors who know how important it is to spay/neuter. Cornell has one of the best vet schools. TC Shelter has an 88% adopt/retrieve rate. Again, the biggest city in the county is home to some well-educated persons.
Anyway, definitely going to read that book.
post #14 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
I think there IS a problem of overpopulation in both cats and dogs. However, they don't seem to be counting in the fact there are a ton of "rescue groups" for breeds out there. Maybe people don't take them to the pounds/shelters to be put down, but find a rescue group.

And the rescue groups find homes for those that would have been put down and increase the statistics of the shelters.
I would have to agree with this. There are so many people and places that have so many pets because they are just so many that need homes. I think there is a population overload on cats AND dogs. In my area you can always find dogs for sale for for free and they stay that way for MONTHS! I could look in the paper today and find at least 3 litter of long haired Chihauhau's for sale.
post #15 of 21
There is an overpopulation problem with small & furries as well. Look through the shelter websites in VA and most of them have tons of rabbits at any given time. A lot of them usually have bunches of hampsters as well, with a sprinkling of guinea pigs and other pets.

All the rescues here are full. Shelters are full. In the paper are 20 different ads just for German Shepherd pups (if I were to count all the ads up, there's probably more than 50 of them). And Nathan Winograd thinks there's no overpopulation problem. Ok then.
post #16 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by butzie View Post
I am going to read Nathan Winograd's book. I know that the SF SPCA does a good job, but if he is with the Tompkins County Shelter now, he is in a different situation. The largest city in the county is Ithaca, NY where Cornell and Ithaca College are located. You have a population of students, most of whom cannot bring/own pets and of professors who know how important it is to spay/neuter. Cornell has one of the best vet schools. TC Shelter has an 88% adopt/retrieve rate. Again, the biggest city in the county is home to some well-educated persons.
Anyway, definitely going to read that book.
He's no longer in Tompkins Country. He's proven the viability of a no kill nation in both urban and rural areas. He comes into an area, implements his techniques then moves onto the next. He choses areas where the naysayers claim it cannot be done and proves them wrong.

His book is fascinating. I know of at least 1 lucky TCS'er who got an autographed copy of it as a SS present.
post #17 of 21
That makes me so mad! Obviously, they have never worked at a shelter. If we don't have animal underpopulation we certaintly have ignorant pet owner OVERpopulation.
post #18 of 21
We got a dog at the San Mateo Pound and she lived to be 15. She was 1.5 Years when we got her. We never even thought of getting a Puppy. I also saved aot of feral cats and found them homes. I kept some too but do not have any now.
post #19 of 21
The article is ridiculous! As an example off of the top of my head, thousands of greyhounds are euthanized every year because so many are bred for racing, and despite numerous greyhound rescue groups, there are just too many to adopt out. At that is ONE BREED. Think of all the cats and dogs who are allowed to breed indiscriminantly. When I look at the local Humane Society and all of the Pet Ads in our newspaper, I can honestly say that the idea of pet underpopulation is a joke.
post #20 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Momofmany View Post
He's no longer in Tompkins Country. He's proven the viability of a no kill nation in both urban and rural areas. He comes into an area, implements his techniques then moves onto the next. He choses areas where the naysayers claim it cannot be done and proves them wrong.

His book is fascinating. I know of at least 1 lucky TCS'er who got an autographed copy of it as a SS present.
I also thought it was a very good book. I came at it from the perspective of someone who worked in a kill shelter, and couldn't come to terms with the killing. That was one of the many reasons I couldn't work in one anymore. I think if his ideas were put into action nationwide, it would work. It's already been proven to work in Tompkins County and San Fransisco.

Edited to add: I agree the article linked is a little weird...
post #21 of 21
I got a signed copy of his book - it is really fabulous and very inspiring. I am hoping to go to one of his upcoming workshops or maybe help schedule one here in Chicagoland again http://www.nathanwinograd.com/nathanwinograd_020.htm

Anyone who doesn't think there is an overpopulation should put their phone number on a published shelter list. You will get so many calls for owner give-ups, strays, ferals, it will break your heart. And almost as many people call about dogs as cats, except for the ferals of course.

Sometimes it just feels overwhelming. As much as everyone can do, there are millions more in need. I am hopeful one day all the people in this country (and some day, the world) will understand just how bad the problem is, how many animals are suffering, how many are dying, how many are in cruel homes; and how many need food, a kind hand, medical care, help. I just keep telling myself, one day at a time- or else I can't sleep at night.
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