Last month, the pound in Wake Co, NC took a healthy looking dog named Sassy to a local TV studio for a Pet of the Day feature. Then they brought her back to the pound and killed her because they said she had a cough. The public was outraged and as a result, the pound said it would temporarily try a new policy: treat coughing dogs and allow others to pull them for treatment. The result?
For the first time in eight months, the number of dogs adopted from the Wake County Animal Center is higher than the number killed, officials said Monday.
Well say, whaddaya know? Maybe there really is something to this whole no kill thing after all. Not so fast says shelter director Dennis McMichael:
The shelter is still studying the effects of suspending the kill policy before deciding whether to make it permanent, he said.
Epidemiologists and veterinarians are being consulted to determine what the euthanasia policy for upper respiratory infections should be, he said.
I’m not an epidemiologist or a vet but I just conducted a 25 second study of the effects of suspending the kill-everything-that-coughs policy and it appears that the effect was the shelter turning around its terrible kill stats for the first time in 8 months. Therefore: Success!
I also spied with my layman’s eyes another tidbit:
An average of three dogs a day come down with an upper respiratory infection at the shelter.
Wake Co took in 6347 dogs in 2010. That’s a lot of dogs – about 17 per day, every day of the year – but 3 dogs coming down with a cough every day seems like a lot too. What do you think?