Monday, October 16, 2006

Kill Vs. No-Kill

Someone I know (via the Net) posted something really hurtful to me in a forum I am active in. She has recently started started volunteering at a local kill shelter. Part of her post read "It's so easy to be a no-kill shelter and look like the good guy - just don't take any animals!" When I responded to her that I was upset by what she wrote she responded that she respects the work that the rescue I volunteer with does but the effect that the local no-kill shelters have on kill shelters in her area upsets her. If a no-kill shelter doesn't have space the cat gets taken to the kill shelter. I fail to see how the fault comes back to the no kill shelter. After all, I sadly know first hand how hard space can be to come by. Shouldn't the blame here be on the owner giving up their cat? On people not spaying and neutering their cats? On our society as whole for not valuing animal life? I'm not sure how the no kill rescue got to be the bad guy. If they didn't exist there would just be more cats being killed.

It amazed me even more when she wrote that the kill shelter she volunteers with doesn't adopt to people who plan on declawing or letting their cats roam freely outside, and she supported their stance. I hate declawing and think cats are safer indoors, but when it comes down to dieing or being declawed I know what choice I would make. Apparently it makes more sense to them to let the cats die inside with their claws intact than to take a chance on giving the cat a longer life in a potentially good home.

Because of my work with a wonderful no kill shelter I have had the chance to have some amazing cats in my life, some with medical or behavior problems who wouldn't have had a chance at a kill shelter. I take it personally when someone attacks something I strongly believe it and I hate blanket statements. I don't blame the workers and volunteers at kill shelters either. The blame comes back to society as a whole and blaming other rescues accomplishes nothing except to cause hostility and discord among the very people who should be working together.

1 comment:

  1. I am going to be addressing some of these issues on my blog. I sometimes feel hard-hearted when I don't take in another stray, but 4 cats in a small home is all I can deal with. They were all strays with special needs, no one wanted to adopt them, and I never had them declawed.
    It isn't an easy subject, and we all just do the best we can.