The Ugly Truth About Kill Shelters in America

Our furry friends need us now more than ever. In 2021 2,038,347 cats and dogs entered shelters. Of those approximately two million, about 52% were cats and 48% were dogs. Unfortunately due to overcrowding and a lack of resources, 139,817 cats and dogs unnecessarily lost their lives in these shelters. Of the cats and dogs euthanized each year, only about 10% suffer from irremediable medical or behavioral issues that compromised their quality of life and prevented them from being rehomed. Shelters and rescues require our help so that we can end this cruel act entirely in America.

At Pawtocol, we are on a mission to improve the lives of pets and pet owners and are focused on putting a stop to kill shelters. We want to not only provide funding and resources to rescues and shelters in need, but we also want to educate the pet community with factual information about what kill shelters are and how to put an end to them. The facts are that in 2021 kill shelters still made up about 48% and five states accounted for more than 50% of the shelter animals being killed. We believe that by bringing awareness to what is really going on in the shelters and providing adequate resources to shelters and rescues in need, we can help America become a no-kill country.

In 2021 just under half the number of shelters in America were still kill shelters, meaning that if an animal is not adopted after a certain number of days, becomes ill, or is of old age, they are at risk of being euthanized. However, America has seen a vast improvement in ending no-kill shelters. Since 2016 the percent of no kill shelters has almost doubled from 24% to 52%. A shelter is considered a no-kill shelter when they save 9 out of 10 pets that enter the shelter by finding them a home and keeping them healthy. The national save rate also improved in 2021 with an 83% average for shelter animals compared to 64% in 2015. It is evident that the work being done in the pet community is working, but it is also clear that we still have work to do.

The Best Friends Animal Society is on a mission to end kill shelters in America by 2025. Based on the statistics collected over the years we are not far from their goal. To support the cause of ending kill shelters in America, Pawtocol has created a Pet Fund that donates 100% of its proceeds to the shelter and rescues we have partnered with. It’s a sad reality that more than half of the shelters in America do not have the proper funding, volunteers, and resources to care for all of the animals brought in.

ver the last 5 years, the pet community has seen some huge wins such as the national save-rate increasing by 19% and Delaware and New Hampshire becoming no-kill states., meaning every shelter in those states reached the save-rate benchmark. However, the data also has revealed where the majority of euthanizations are happening. In 2021 five states (Texas, California, Florida, North Carolina, and Alabama) accounted for more than 50% of the total number of animals being killed in kill shelters. Knowing this information is extremely beneficial to the mission to end kill shelters because it shows us where the work needs to be done. It wasn’t until the last 15 years that organizations like Best Friends Animals Society started collecting the true data on kill shelters in America. Since they began compiling this data it has revealed quite a lot about what areas of the pet community need our help. It is up to each community to do its part to help out rescues and shelters in need.

The work starts and ends with us. With over two million cats and dogs being brought into shelters every year we need to find a way to provide more funding, resources, and volunteers so that our animals have a fair shot. The more resources and volunteers each shelter and rescue receives the easier it will be for them to reach the 90% save rate.

One of the many ways our team at Pawtocol is supporting the cause to end kill shelters in America is through the Pawtocol Pet Fund. We have created the first ever blockchain-powered fund exclusively dedicated to helping animal rescues and shelters. In our mission to improve the lives of pet owners too, we wanted to create a transparent and secure way for you to donate to shelters and rescues in need.

Pawtocol is donating a portion of every month’s revenue to the fund and will evenly distribute 100% of what is in the fund to the rescues and shelters we have partnered with. In the future, we will be establishing a quick and easy way for the Pawtocol community to donate directly to the Pawtocol Pet Fund. For more information on how to donate to the Pawtocol Pet Fund please click here. If you are unable to donate we ask that you continue to shed light on this issue, volunteer at local shelters, and adopt instead of shop.

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Pawtocol uses blockchain technology to improve the lives of pets and pet owners all over the world. Medium is where we share our latest thoughts and updates.