On September 27, 2011 the Talk About It! Campaign, hosted an event called “Reno Achieved No Kill: San Antonio CAN too!” featuring , an open community conversation at the Norris Conference Center from 6PM to about 9PM.
In attendance were two No Kill experts from Washoe County in Reno, Nevada. Our featured experts were Bonney Brown, executive director of the Nevada Humane Society, and Mitch Schneider, the current manager of the Washoe County Regional Animal Services. They both shared multiple strategies on how Reno became a No Kill community. It is our goal, San Antonio, to duplicate their success in our own community deep in the heart of Texas. There are eight different topics to be covered in our blog, so there will be a total of eight posts to browse through!
These questions were submitted by community members that were in attendance at the event through their registration, a written submission during our conversation, or there was unfortunately not enough time for these questions to be answered at the event.
Here we go San Antonio: Questions related to the No Kill Initiative are answered below!
Q: Why is San Antonio willing to accept 70% live release while Austin, Charlottesville, and Ithaca are greater than 90%?
A: 70% live release is a goal for San Antonio to flip the live release and euthanasia ratio from where it is today (31% live release/69% euthanasia) to 70% live release/30% euthanasia. We feel that is a strong goal. When we achieve 70% live release, we will work on getting to 80%, then 90%.
Q: How can we know that we are actually reaching no-kill as opposed to just looking good on paper? For example, how can we deal with the number of strays as opposed to surrendered and seized animals since they can multiply unchecked on the street?
A: The Nevada Humane Society and the Washoe County RAS report their Live Release Rate based on actual intake, not just healthy and treatable intake. There is no smoke or mirrors. We strive to be open and transparent with all of our information. The more dogs and cats that are returned to their owners or adopted, the more that can be brought in from the streets.
Q: What is the single biggest factor in accomplishing the goal of “No-kill”?
A: Determining that this was what we were going to do and doing it in a determined fashion. “Effective people are not problem-minded—they are opportunity-minded. They starve problems and feed solutions.” (Drucker)
Q: What kinds of educational programs do you offer in your area and how successful have they been?
A: The best education comes in one-on-one conversations between animal control officers and citizens and in the word of mouth that occurs when a happy adopter tells his/her friends about the great pet they adopted. The Nevada Humane Society decided to devote its resources to high-volume adoptions and does not pursue big education programs.
There are eight different topics so there will be a total of eight posts to browse through! Make sure to enrich our blog with feedback!
That concludes the blog marathon for the day! Keep your ears up and your tails waggin, San Antonio!