Pet Over Population – Really?

While it is true that there are far too many pets that end up in shelters and rescue each year, the numbers of these pets are greatly exaggerated! The The notion that there is a pet OVER population problem is all a lie put out there by anti pet, animal rights fanatics! The majority of pets in shelters today are young adults or adults. Everyone wants a cute little puppy but when the cute little puppy grows up and they have never spent the time to socialize or train said puppy, they are stuck with a dog that barks all the time, is destructive and maybe even aggressive. Okay, maybe I should have not used the word “stuck” because we live in such a disposable society these days- no one is ever “stuck” with anything. Most people will just take the dog to the pound or call a rescue organization, let them deal with this animal, they don’t have the time or the patience!

Then some kind hearted individual comes along and wants SAVE the “poor dog” from being euthanized for a crime it did not know any better to do. This is great except for the fact that most times this kind hearted individual knows nothing of how to properly socialize or train a dog, especially one that has been mentally and emotionally traumatized and in many cases even physically abused. The dog then ends up fighting with their other pets, destroying the yard and home, using the house as its toilet, etc. So what happens? The dog goes back into the shelter or rescue and is recycled again and often again before it most likely ends up being humanely put to sleep. These same dogs are “counted” each time they enter the shelter as part of the over-population problem.

Animal Rights organizations, namely HSUS and PeTA, manipulate data to support claims of “pet overpopulation” and high euthanasia rates. These organizations use a lot of sensationalism and emotion to make data that contradicts their claims appear to support their claims. What follows is the data used by these organizations and the facts behind the dramatic nonsense spewed in Animal Rights.

HSUS uses pet population data from The National Council on Pet Population, Study and Policy, The data may be accurate, although it may also be skewed since the Council may have only polled larger shelters with higher kill rates. The data would show lower numbers if smaller shelters with lower kill rates were included that had been excluded. So, if the data is skewed, then the numbers used by HSUS are exaggerated, but even with exaggerated numbers, there is no evidence of “pet overpopulation.”

It is true that there are many millions of dogs and cats in this country, but this it true because there are many millions of people in this country. We did at one time have the makings of pet over-population but with the huge push for spaying and neutering 20 years or so ago, the numbers have declined. We do not have a pet “overpopulation” crisis in this country; however, we DO have a shortage of animal shelters in this country. The few shelters we do have, don’t keep animals longer than a few days and rarely more than a week before euthanizing those animals. Animals barely have the time to settle in to their surroundings and showcase their “pet” qualities before they are killed.

The question is whether “pet overpopulation” exists. The data shows that it does not. According to HSUS, approximately 98 percent of the dog and cat population is in a home. According to PeTA, 77.6 percent of the dogs that die in California will die of causes not related to euthanasia in a shelter.

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