A blog by spcaLA president, Madeline Bernstein

Jan 30, 2011

Why Animal Transports Work

There has been a recent assertion that transporting animals from one place to another simply reassigns the task of euthanasia to the receiving entity. That is not the case with our program or any reliable program that I am familiar with for the following reasons.

The receiving entity must be legitimate and actually want the pets. We send small dogs to locations that have none, but, do have a demand for them. The result is that there is usually a line at the shelter waiting to adopt them before the plane reaches the gate, and, that they are in homes very quickly.

The arrival of these dogs has not been found to accelerate the euthanasia of existing large dogs at those locations. The new arrivals are placed too quickly to affect space challenges and/or the organization has planned the request for the dogs to coincide with the availability of extra space. Those shoppers seeking the smaller dogs have come specifically for those dogs and may never even have been to a shelter before this event! Those partial to larger dogs will continue to visit those dogs at the shelter and rarely convert to "small dog people". A few of each will cross over which helps all the dogs! Some will become new fans and supporters of that organization.

We, as is the case with legitimate supply shelters, are sending very adoptable dogs that are simply not in demand by our demographics, which affords our remaining dogs more time and resources to be rehabilitated and placed.

Finally, many of those who adopted small breed dogs from the airlifts did not have to go to a breeder, puppy mill or an internet retailer to get a dog that could not be found at a local shelter. What could be better than that?

The caveat, as always, is to work with credible and ethical partners so that the end result is not relocation but reduction in pet overpopulation and euthanasia with an increase in permanent adoptions.

To see my original transport business idea see http://bit.ly/gZMy1B   Since the plan was written, we have sent more dogs to Colorado, Houston and Florida with several more flights in the queue!

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