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Community partnering as a tool for improving live release rate in animal shelters in the United States

By E. Weiss, G. Patronek, M. Slater, L. Garrison, K. Medicus

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Collaboration among all shelters and nonhuman animal welfare groups within a community along with the transparent, shared reporting of uniform data have been promoted as effective ways to increase the number of animals' lives saved. This article summarizes the shelter intakes, outcomes, and live release rate (LRR) from 6 geographically diverse communities participating in the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Partnership program for 5 years (2007-2011). This program is both a grant program and a coaching program that works to focus the community partners on a data-driven goal using standardized definitions and metrics. There was improvement in LRR in all communities over time regardless of intake numbers, human population, or mix of dogs/puppies and cats/kittens entering shelters. Averaged across all communities over the 5-year period, there was an overall improvement in LRR of 62%. Within individual communities, the degree of improvement ranged from 18% to 96%. This improvement in LRR was accomplished through a wide variety of programs in each community based on resources and interests during the time period.

Publication Title Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science
Volume 16
Issue 3
Pages 221-238
ISBN/ISSN 1088-8705
Publisher Taylor & Francis
DOI 10.1080/10888705.2013.803816
Language English
Author Address Shelter Research and Development, ASPCA, 3201 SW Winding Way, Palm City, FL 34990,
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Researchers should cite this work as follows:

  1. Animal housing
  2. Animals
  3. Animal welfare
  4. APEC countries
  5. Canidae
  6. Canine
  7. Carnivores
  8. Cats
  9. Communities
  10. Countries
  11. Developed countries
  12. Dogs
  13. Humans
  14. Mammals
  15. Men
  16. North America
  17. OECD countries
  18. pathogens
  19. peer-reviewed
  20. pest control
  21. Pets and companion animals
  22. populations
  23. prevention
  24. Primates
  25. shelters
  26. United States of America
  27. vertebrates
  28. young animals
  1. peer-reviewed