NEW YORK—More homeless dogs and cats are leaving Shelby County, Ala. area shelters alive and getting into loving homes, thanks to a partnership with the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®), which today announced that its partnership in Shelby County increased its community-wide “Live Release Rate,” or LRR, by 10 percentage points, reaching 50.5 percent, in the second quarter of 2011.
Nearly 475 animals were adopted from Shelby County partners through the second quarter, and adoptions are just one part of the equation. Aside from increasing adoptions, returns-to-owner and transfers to shelters where adoption is guaranteed—are other initiatives designed to promote positive outcomes for at-risk animals and reduce euthanasia. These initiatives, in relation to the number of animals coming into the shelter, is referred to as the LRR. A total of 1171 animals left Shelby County-area partner shelters alive through the second quarter of 2011, 106 more animals than in the same period in 2010.
“Shelby County continues to make remarkable progress with all of their hard work in the partnership,” said ASPCA President and CEO Ed Sayres. “This is our main vision and the reason behind our push for more collaboration. By working together more homeless animals leave the local shelter system alive and get into good homes.”
In addition to increasing its adoptions and live release numbers, Shelby County partners also decreased euthanasia by 29 percent, or 257 animals, as well as the euthanasia rate compared to total intake, which decreased by 10 percentage points from 55 percent to 45 percent compared to the second quarter of 2010.
“To be able to say that both adoptions and the number of live releases are up, and that euthanasia is down, gives us a great sense of pride for the work we’re doing in the community,” said Jenny Miller, executive director of Shelby Humane Society, a non-profit shelter and adoption facility, and one of the ASPCA’s local partners. Added Chad Scroggins, supervisor for the Shelby County Department of Environmental Services, the second of the ASPCA’s two partner agencies in Shelby County: “After seeing the positive effects from this kind of collaboration and teamwork within the partnership, we know that it really works. We’re hoping to continue making this kind of progress in the future.”
The ASPCA Partnership is a unique collaboration with communities nationwide to increase the live release rate by saving those animals most at risk through sustainable data-driven plans and programs. These engage the community to reunite lost animals with their families, increase adoptions, target spay/neuter and support feral cats and Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) initiatives.
Since the partnership began in 2009, the ASPCA has provided more than $200,000 in grant funding to the partner agencies in Shelby County. In addition to Shelby County, ASPCA partners have provided positive outcomes for homeless animals in many communities around the country, including Austin, Texas; Buncombe County, N.C.; Charleston, S.C.; Cleveland, Ohio; Miami-Dade County, Fla.; Oklahoma City, Okla.; Sacramento, Calif.; Spokane, Wash.; and Tallahassee, Fla.