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The Good and the Bad of Kill Shelters

By , Westminster, CO

When someone walks into a shelter, they may seem like they have a friendly environment, but what hides behind the walls are inhumane methods of cruelty. Gas chambers close in animals to kill them, crates upon crates stacked up and lined up with only a hose to clean them up, and shots to put dogs and cats to a sleep where they will never wake again. There is still another way to shelter dogs and cats. No-Kill shelters and some rescues don’t end the animals lives. They give dogs and cats better care. While there are many kill shelters, there are still many foster and no kill shelters to protect animals.


Kill vs. NO-Kill vs. Puppy Mills


Dogs and cats may be animals but they have lives like people do. No-Kill shelters are key to protecting these animals from not having home to not having a life at all. No-Kill shelters are lifesavers for animals. They give the right care to each individual dog or cat and give a safe home to them. From the nOkill Network, an organization that promotes the idea of no kill shelters, states “Once killing is eliminated as an option, creative solutions emerge and saving lives happens instantly.” When the killing is gone so many opportunities will be available for animals, owners, and animal rights activists. No animal deserves to die when they have done nothing wrong. The idea of a No-Kill shelter saves so many lives and makes a giant difference in the world.


Unfortunately, No-Kill shelters are not the only place that animals stay when they don’t have a home. Kill shelters are found in lots of places all over. Each shelter may have their own way of killing the animal, either putting them to sleep or use of gas chambers. From the Humane Society it states about gas chambers “Animals are placed into a small, dark, box, one that's sometimes full of the smells of the animals who came before them—many of whom may have urinated or defecated before they died.” Also from New York Times it states “kills an average of about 2,000 dogs and cats each year at its animal shelter here.” No dog or cat, either gassed or put down deserves to die. They did nothing wrong. Innocent and homeless animals should get to live out their lives.


Puppy mills are a type of kill shelter that breed dogs. Most puppy mills seem fine but really they cover up what is happening in the background. These mills are really unsanitary and even more inhumane than regular kill shelters. According to the ASPCA- The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals states about puppy mills, “Puppy mills usually house dogs in overcrowded and unsanitary conditions, without adequate veterinary care, food, water and socialization...Breeding dogs at mills might spend their entire lives outdoors, exposed to the elements, or crammed inside filthy structures where they never get the chance to feel the sun or breathe fresh air.” This is no way to treat an animal. Also from the ASPCA is states “To maximize profits, female dogs are bred at every opportunity with little to no recovery time between litters. When they are physically depleted to the point that they no longer can reproduce, breeding females are often killed.” Not only are the animals treated horribly, they are also killed. The fact that so many animals are put in the environment of closed in spaces that are full of germs and grime, is not right, especially when the animals are healthy and adoptable.Puppy mills are all about making money and getting away with it. Places like the ASPCA help stop the problem of puppy mills. They work to raise money to help and create No-Kill shelters and help spread awareness about the issue. 


Helping Out


There may be lots of Kill Shelters and Puppy Mills but there are ways to stop them and promote No-Kill Shelters. Different organizations such as the ASPCA, the nOkill network, and many No-Kill Shelters in Colorado like A Puppy’s Voice in Fort Collins, and Angels With Paws in Lakewood are supporters of and are No-Kill Shelters. From the ASPCA it states “Supporting the creation and expansion of subsidized no-cost or low-cost spay/neuter programs… Ensuring that veterinarians are allowed to travel where needed assist animals in crisis” There are many things that people can do along with helping increase spay/neutering in animals and helping with vet bills. Volunteering is another easy way to get involved with helping animals have a good life.


Kill Shelters may be a bad way to home animals but kill shelters don’t think so. These shelters believe that killing animals is the only way to handle the huge amount of dogs and cats come through. According to PETA, and animal rights group that kills animals, it states “That is how we can drastically reduce—and hopefully end—the homeless-animal crisis and the need for euthanasia.” PETA’s policy is that when there are too many animals, killing is the best option. From the New York Times is states “And the shelter does few adoptions — 19 cats and dogs in 2012 and 24 in 2011, according to state records.” PETA is killing animals without even trying hard to give them homes. When innocent animals are dying, and even being perfectly healthy, without being given up for adoption, there is a big problem. The New York Times also states  “Joan E. Schaffner, an animal rights lawyer and an associate professor at the George Washington University Law School, which hosts an annual no-kill conference. ‘PETA does lots of good for animals, but I could never support them on this.’” There are no many different ways to protect animals and killing is not one of these ways.


No-Kill shelters are the best option to saving animals lives. Gas chambers lined in the back of a room, crates upon crates covered in grime, and shots laying on a table, these things could be eliminated with the help of No-Kill shelters. Ways to increase the number of No-Kill shelters are to volunteer at good shelters and foster cares, raise money, and raise awareness about kill shelters. A good world for animals is a world without kill shelters.




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