Under the leadership of the Animal Shelter Alliance of Portland (ASAP), the Portland metro area is poised to be named one of, if not the safest major metropolitan city in America for homeless pets. The six largest public and private animal shelters in the Portland/Vancouver metro area saved an unprecedented 91 percent of all cats and dogs that came through their doors in 2013. That is nearly double the national average according to the Humane Society of the United States.
Thanks to a strong community effort by veterinarians, rescue groups, adopters, donors and volunteers, participating shelters have decreased euthanasia rates of cats and dogs by 76%, since the alliance formed in 2006. As a result, the Portland community is gaining national attention as one of the largest and most effective animal welfare alliances in the country.
PetSmart Charities, the largest funder of animal welfare efforts in North America, is showcasing the success of ASAP on its website. PetSmart Charities funds a large part of ASAP’s highly successful low-cost spay/neuter program “Spay & Save.” In four short years, the program has altered over 41,000 cats of owners in need of financial assistance as well as stray and feral cats. This in turn has resulted in 35% fewer cats entering the shelters.
“It takes a village,” notes Stacy Graham, Executive Director of The Humane Society for SW Washington, “and the people of the Portland/Vancouver area have truly stepped up to help animal shelters save as many homeless cats and dogs as possible. In order for us to continue to lead the nation, we need to stay dedicated to sustaining this huge community accomplishment.
In 2006, 4 out of 10 animals were euthanized in Portland
In 2013, ASAP saved 91% of the almost 32,000 cats and dogs taken into Portland shelters
Saving over 29,000 cats and dogs last year, means that not only easily adoptable animals such as kittens, puppies, healthy and social animals were saved. ASAP credits their rescue partners, veterinarians, adopters and their unwavering league of volunteers and donors for helping save the lives of the animals that needed a little extra help and placing them into homes as well.
Since 2006, ASAP has worked diligently toward achieving its goal of saving as many cats and dogs that can humanely and responsibly be saved. ASAP implemented several cutting-edge programs to decrease shelter intake, provide medical and behavioral services to shelter pets, increase transfers of pets between shelters and rescue groups, and encourage adoptions.
In order to sustain this success, here a few things you can do to help:
Adopt from shelters and rescue groups – the national average of people adopting their pets from shelters is only 20-30%.
Foster shelter pets at home – help with Moms and kittens, or pets that need a little extra time
Support the shelters financially to enable additional medical and behavioral support
To get involved today, please contact ASAP at asapmetro.org or your local animal shelter and become an adopter, volunteer, foster parent or donor.