Local Group Pushes for No Kill Animal Shelter

HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV)-- A Facebook page is getting a lot of response in the Valley, as a push for a local shelter to euthanize fewer animals; however, workers at the shelter say, becoming no kill, isn't a reality.

"The phrase is very popular in today's world, we do not feel that it's responsible because it still masks the overpopulation crisis that we have in our community as well as irresponsible pet ownership," said Anne Anderson, the executive director of the Harrisonburg-Rockingham SPCA.

Anderson doesn't support becoming a no-kill shelter. The shelter is contracted by the city, and gets about $450,000 worth of tax dollars a year.

They euthanize about 70 percent of their cats and about 30 percent of dogs, according to the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

The Augusta County Pound euthanizes 30 percent of their cats. Anderson argues they don't turn animals away.

"Highest number we receive for the felines are indeed feral and unfortunately to trap, neuter and release them back on the street is not a lawful option for the Harrisonburg-Rockingham SPCA," said Anderson.

But, supporters of having a no kill community say it is possible to work together by utilizing rescues, fosters, spay, and neuter more.

Others, including Kati Deyerle agree. Her cats were found, at just a day old, in a box outside.

"If my cats had been taken to the SPCA, they would have been put down because they would have required way too many resources to keep alive," said Kati Deyerle, a volunteer at Cat's Cradle.

"Do more outreach and do more animal education for young people, things like that that make it a more likable cause," said Deyerle.

A desire to save more animals, is what many hope will become a reality. On Tuesday, the Rockingham-Harrisonburg SCPA sent 20 cats to a no-kill rescue group in New York.

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