No one really takes PETA seriously.
Remind me to tell you about my job interview with PETA sometime. That was something!
I tend to ignore PETA on this blog, but recently I read about a PETA representative opposing San Diego County’s new no-kill policy.
Yes, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals is against no-kill animal sheltering.
But first, let’s get to the exciting news in San Diego!
San Diego County is No Kill!
The San Diego County animal shelters announced last month that as of July 1, 2015 they will no longer kill animals because of a lack of space. They will only euthanize (in the true sense of the word) animals that are truly suffering or too vicious to be adopted.
It’s inspiring to be in a county where the shelters and rescues are working together. This includes several non-profit organizations and rescue groups as well as the county’s animal services.
Here is one of the dogs I met at a recent adoption event for Labs & More of San Diego:
The San Diego Union Tribune wrote about the county’s new no-kill policy here. The article explains everything well and focuses on the programs the shelters have been working on such as:
- Opening a behavioral center to help rehabilitate dogs
- Launching a program that offers free or subsidized spaying and neutering
- Opening a 24-hour kitten nursery, which has found homes for 10,000 cats
- Expanding foster-home programs and always seeking additional foster homes
All great news, right?
Sure, there will be challenges. No kill is never easy, but it’s great to see such a serious discussion and goal. Read more on what no kill shelters are doing differently.
OK, enter PETA.
A common problem with news stories related to animal welfare is that reporters try to cover “both sides” of the issue, giving equal time to both.
Reporters will sometimes interview one person from each “side,” even if the person on the opposing side is literally the only one in opposition.
Fair and balanced?
The KC Dog Blog has written about this issue here in relation to breed bans and dangerous dog laws. When just a handful of people are in favor of a breed ban, they are often given equal representation in the media even when the majority of experts, dog lovers and individuals are opposed to breed bans.
Unfortunately, the San Diego story is a good example of this attempt to remain “fair and balanced.” The reporter had to call all the way to Virginia to find the token person who apparently opposes San Diego’s new policy. Yep … hello, PETA!
From the Union Tribune: (Bold emphasis mine.)
Teresa Chargrin, animal care and control specialist for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, said from Virginia on Wednesday that the coalition’s efforts [sic] but expressed caution about expanding the number of foster homes too quickly. Other shelters around the country have found that some foster homes exploit the animals and are no better than puppy mills, she said.
Foster homes are no better than puppy mills?
Chargrin goes on to say no kill is a “noble goal” (as though it’s never been achieved) and shelters have been “working on it for decades.”
What she doesn’t mention is there are currently more than 233 documented no-kill communities in the United States. View them all here (listed down the right-hand side).
The Union Trib doesn’t mention anyone from San Diego who is opposed to the new policy. It seems irrelevant to include someone all the way from Virginia who does. But, you know …
The great news is so many communities around the country are embracing the concept of no kill!
What are some of the things your community is doing to save more dogs and cats?
Let me know in the comments!
Sign up to receive training tips & more in my weekly newsletter: