This year, about 34,000 dogs and cats will be brought into the San Antonio Animal Care Services shelters. Based on year to date live release and euthanasia rates, about 19,000 of them will be adopted, rescued, or returned to their owners. About 15,000 of them will be put down. Of the 15,000, about 9,000 are considered to be unhealthy and untreatable—they are too sick, injured, or aggressive to be pets. 6,000, however, are healthy, treatable and adoptable. Those 6,000 dogs and cats would make good pets, but are being put down because there is no room for them in the shelter and no one will adopt them or rescue them. On top of that, over 27,000 dead dogs and cats will be picked up on San Antonio city streets by the Solid Waste Department. That’s a total of 33,000 healthy and adoptable dogs and cats that will be dead because they were allowed by their owners to roam freely; or they are their dogs’ puppies and their cats’ kittens that are living in the streets and neighborhoods of our city.
Purchasing a pet—even from a “reputable breeder”—takes homes away from shelter animals, and it perpetuates the use of animals for profit. When a dog is purchased from a neighbor, from a pickup truck at a flea market or on the side of the road, it keeps a breeder in business. Plus, you can be very sure that those puppies or kittens have not been spayed and neutered and will soon be adding to the pet overpopulation in San Antonio.
There is a rescue group for every breed of dog you can think of, and a true fact is that 25% of dogs in shelters are purebreds. If want a specific breed, your shelter staff can help you find it; either at the shelter or through one if its rescue partners.
- Adopt! Don’t buy a puppy or a kitten from a pet shop, a pickup truck, on-line, or from a newspaper ad. When you do, you are keeping another breeder in business.
- Don’t breed dogs or cats yourself, either—for fun or profit. Dogs and cats do not need the “experience” of having a litter. It is not joyful or fulfilling for them. It’s simply biological. Similarly, dogs and cats are not romantic. They do not experience “romantic love.” They are not “Casanovas” and “Jezebels.” Mating for them is simply biological, it is not romantic.
- Don’t let your pet have puppies or kittens so that your children can see “the miracle of birth.” They can learn about animal reproduction another way that doesn’t add to the pet population.
- CARE—Keep your dogs and cat at home, either in the house or in a fenced yard. Restrain them humanely with a tether only if you have to. Do not let them roam freely where they can get hit by a car, or get into other trouble. Put a collar with an ID tag on them in case they get out by accident.
- ADOPT—Find your next pet at a local shelter or rescue group. It will be neutered, vaccinated, microchipped, and licensed. Take a look at www.petfinder.com, which is used by adoption and rescue groups only. There are so many great dogs and cats in our area shelters and rescues.
- NEUTER—Spay or neuter your pets so that they do not add to the overpopulation of dogs and cats in the city. If they do get out, they can’t make more puppies and kittens.
Here’s a list of shelters and adoption groups with their websites and their phone numbers.
|Alamo Area Partners for Animal Welfare (AAPAW)||Animal Care Services (ACS)
4710 SH 151
San Antonio, TX 78227
(210) 207-4PET (207-6653)
|Animal Defense League of Texas (ADL)
11300 Nacogdoches Rd.
San Antonio, TX 78217
(210) 655-1481 x104
|Bulverde Area Humane Society
Bulverde, TX 78154
|Converse Animal Shelter
9634 Schaefer Road
Converse, TX 78109
|Helotes Humane Society
PETCO11396 Bandera Road
San Antonio, TX 78250
|Homes for Pets/Schertz Humane Society
PetSmart8278 Agora Parkway (The Forum)
Selma, TX 78154
|San Antonio Humane Society
4804 Fredericksburg Road
San Antonio, TX 78229
|San Antonio Pets Alive!
4710 SH 151
San Antonio, TX 78227
|Spay-Neuter-Inject Protect San Antonio (SNIPSA)
6338 N. New Braunfels Ave.
San Antonio, TX 78209
Talk About It! Care. ADOPT. neuter.
(All photos were provided by the Animal Defense League.)