Saturday, March 8, 2008

Pet shelter overpopulation - a Boogeyman?

USA Today reports on the importation of thousands of dogs annually to fill the shortages at those 'overcrowded' animal shelters we hear so much about... USA TODAY ARTICLE ... here's an excerpt from the article 

"Pet overpopulation is a misnomer," she [Patti Strand, president of the National Animal Interest Alliance] says. "What we have is a pet distribution problem."

Spay and neutering campaigns
[ed. largely voluntary] have been so successful in much of the USA — especially the Northeast and Northwest — that shelters need to look elsewhere if they want dogs to offer for adoption. But Strand says there is abundance of dogs in other parts of the country such as the South that could make up the difference.

Julie Potter, director of Northeast Animal Shelter, said they take in 800 dogs a year from the South. She said people usually want to adopt younger dogs, so they bring 200 dogs a year from Puerto Rico.

So my question for readers is... do we really have too many animals in shelters, or do the shelters and animal activists simply need to figure out how to get these animals to owners who want them?

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