You would think it would be peaceful when a dog is put to sleep. With a drug injected by a gentle veterinarian that slowly and painlessly kicks in and the dog closes his eyes for eternal rest. With people who care about it, surrounding it and making sure it knew that it was loved up until their very last breath. But, that is not always what happens in animal shelters when they put down amazing and sweet dogs in horrific ways.
There are hundreds of other dogs who are endlessly barking to get out of their horrifyingly small cages. The dogs that are getting put down are forced to go into cramped dark spaces sometimes with other dogs while a poisonous gas is now their only air. It is painful and scary for these dogs who are healthy and have no reason to die other then there being no room in that shelter. These healthy animals deserve not only a home but a chance.
National Animal Organizations and regular people have called what is happening “murder.” We do not kill homeless people because there are too many people for a shelter, but somehow society has made it acceptable to kill animals in the same situation. Approximately 1.4 million shelter animals are euthanized each year and a lot of them are probably perfectly healthy animals whose only reason to die is the lack of room in the shelter they were placed in. If the cost is the issue and the reason why innocent animals are not getting the care or life they deserve, then there is a solution.
Some animals are truly sick and the only way to give them what is best is to give them a peaceful way to die instead of months of pain, but what we need to do is try to make all animal shelters in the country no-kill. This goal might be expensive and a lot of work but it is worth it to save all of those lives.
Although we would like to forget the money, this goal is nothing without it. But, Richard Avino, leader of the San Francisco Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, has started his plan, shown in New York Times article: A Campaign for a No-Kill Policy For the Nation’s Animal Shelters, and made the first shelter like the ones he plans to have around the country where each animal gets plenty of space and all healthy animals are given a chance. On top of that, he has donated and been given a starting total of $200 million to begin accomplishing this life-saving goal.
We have a plan, now let’s use it and save some lives.