PDF Nathan J. Winograd À À Redemption The Myth of Pet Overpopulation and the No Kill

Redemption is the story of animal sheltering in the United States a movement that was born of compassion and then lost its way It is the story of the 'No Kill' movement which says we can and must stop the killing But most of all it is a story about believing in the community and trusting in the power of compassion


10 thoughts on “Redemption The Myth of Pet Overpopulation and the No Kill Revolution in America

  1. says:

    This book was ridiculous This is a book to make the public feel better by blaming someone else His entire premise was that shelter workers want to kill animals Don't feel bad about getting rid of your pet it's not your fault if he has to be put down it's those unscrupulous shelter workers Working in a shelter is not a glamorous job by any stretch of the imagination It is a very physically and emotionally difficult job You have to be truly dedicated to get past the dirt and grime the people who surrender pets because they're bored with them the animal cruelty cases and yes the heartbreak of having to put down the beautiful dog you've spent the last two weeks caring for because he tries to rip your hand off if you come near his favorite toy And this happens everyday No one enjoys killing animals but if the animal poses a hazard to potential adopters you can't take that risk Aggressive animals are not necessarily aggressive all the time If a cat is so undersocialized that it can't be safely handled by staff how are they supposed to clean and care for it? No it's not the animal's fault but that doesn't change the fact that it would be irresponsible to adopt it out And the two examples he constantly cites as the poster children for his program? Both have abandoned their open admission no kill mission If his program is unsustainable it doesn't do much good for anyone in the long run Shifting the blame isn't going to solve anything and saying there's no such thing as overpopulation is only going to make it worse If there is no pet overpopulation how can 5 million animals be killed every year yet you can walk into any shelter or pet store and have your pick? Why is he such an advocate of low cost spayneuter if you don't need to cut back on the number of animals being born?


  2. says:

    A good but not perfect bookRaises some good points among them1 originally the SPCA was an group that went out halting incidence of crueltyneglect and refused to take over city pounds because of the conflict between their 'save the animals' mandate and the city pound 'kill unwanted animals' functionis the SPCA's current shelterpound running a conflict of philosophies?2 in the old days pounds and shelters could justify the killing of strays if not their barbaric methods as public safety since there was no such thing as the Rabies vaccine but now that there is a vaccine against this horrible disease why the rush to kill strays and cast offs rather than re homing them? I mean people donate enough alongside the admittedly small tax funding to finance greater efforts3 there are many life saving options that shelters can use never adopt an animal out without spayingneutering first have hours that allow for working people to visit and adopt or reclaim lost pets save on the budget by using volunteer labour have a foster home system so they can care for animals than just how many fit in the shelter show adoptable animals in pet stores so people can adopt instead of buying 'new' which just made cage space in the shelter so you don't need to kill for space co ordinate with outside rescue groups again saving cage space but many if not most shelters never do seemingly because they can't break the 'we've always done it this way' inertiaA couple of points where I disagree with the authora I disagree with his assertion that strayferal cats have no significant environmental impact yes habitat loss and pollution are huge problems for endangered birds etc but I've seen enough stray and pet cats kill in large numbers despite full bellies just because there's a machine gun down the road doesn't mean you can forget about the land mines scattered around but I do agree that Trap Neuter Release is effective feral population control than catch and kill better to have the biggest baddest tomcat 'shooting blanks' rather than just let the 2 and 3 tomcats replace the sperm donor you just culledb I disagree with his implication that pet overpopulation does not exist and that it is not largely due to irresponsible pet owners having worked in vet clinics I've seen enough people too cheap too macho or too can't be bothered to spayneuter their pets resulting in litter after unwanted litter that get dumped or given away to anyone regardless of their suitability for pet ownership I'm not talking about people who are too poor but that's what spayneuter clinics are forwhich is actually one thing the author and I agree onc related to point b i disagree that there is a good home available for all available animals just because there are 100 people who want a pet doesn't mean that all of these people would be good or at least suiltable owners if you want a pet but can't afford the care including regular vaccines and spayneuter dammit if you want a pet but have a hard time feeding yourself never mind another mouth if you want a pet but aren't home enough for its mental and social well being if you want a pet but you can't or don't know how to handle it no matter what you want you should not have a petOverall good stuff in this book if you can sift through the dry and sometimes repetitive writing Not perfect but says some important things and brings up valid pointsAs a side note I've seen some critics say that the 2 shelters the author uses as success stories have since lapsed away from No Kill my answer to that is it worked for the years the author was managing these shelters and lapsed when this manager left Maybe the lapse comes from new managers who fall into the old patterns and don't lift themselves out of this rut or are too worn out to even try different solutions I've seen than one animal die despite easy open and shut solutions for reasons as ridiculous as for example the authority figure couldn't be bothered to sign a release of legal liability to hand a fearful dog over to a well reputed sanctuary specializing in traumatized dog rehab or would rather kill now and have it over with instead of waiting a few hours for a truck to come and pick them uppoint being failure of leadership to continue successful programs does not mean that the programs are not feasible and the fact that it might take time to get new practices running smoothly does not mean these practices should not be tried ESPECIALLY when there are lives in the balance


  3. says:

    This book is fantastic Nathan Winograd systematically and unapologetically rips the sheltering industry a new asshole and then shows us all exactly what needs to be done to fix the mess He is not afraid to be held accountable for what he believes in uses sound facts to state his case and brings hope to a dismal and morbid reality Anyone who has animals loves animals volunteers with animals or cares a whit about the way our communities treat animals would benefit from reading this book It was a revelation to me


  4. says:

    I have such mixed feelings about this book It starts off strong with allegations and statistics that are meant to shock and outrage you but it peeters out after that This book makes some amazing suggestions for shelters to move in the right direction of becoming No Kill I love the first chapter that tells the story of the founding of the first animal welfare groups in this countryI do have some problems with this author though First and probably foremost is that he talks in absolutes The world is made of gray not everything is black and white Yes changes need to be made but not all can be done overnight If shelters are city run part of the blame is on the city and it may be harder to change anything with all the bureaucratic red tape In some instances the fault does need to be shared with the public Low cost spayneuter won't do any good if the public doesn't want to take away their dog's manhood That is not a problem with lower incomes either I know plenty of men who are of middle income and refuse the neuter their male dogs simply because it takes thier manhood away Probably the biggest issue I have with this book is the feral cat issue He says let all feral cats live regarless of their environmental impact That one life is not important than another He claims that there are studies that say in many cases feral cats actually help the wildlife and most of the time have no impact This is a flat out falsehood There are plenty of environments where cats have exterminated all of the local wildlife There has been no choice but to exterminate the cats from many islands to save the remaining members of an endagered species It has happened all over the world Australia New Zealand countless islands all over the world If Jane Goodall says it is ok then it is ok in my book Last he gives no citations for any of his statistics He makes bold claims and says he has seen the studies but does not let the readers know what they are I am a scientific person and I need proof of your claimsDefinitely read it and make up your own mind There are good and bad points But you should decide


  5. says:

    Nathan Winograd exposes false claims made by animal shelters many of which aim to shelter people from non human animals According to Winograd shelters vilify the public for a companion animal overpopulation which does not in fact exist and that if shelter's promoted themselves better kept cleaner facilities and were open for adoption hours then the public would likely adopt animals at rates that shelter murder would not exist The author cites success stories of No Kill shelters from his experience in San Francisco and Tompkins County New York Especially interesting were Winograd's critiques of nativist philosophy and hatefear of feral catsWhile I found much of this book interesting although somewhat repetitive Winograd seems to miss quite a bit He chalks up the kill epidemic to shelter directors who think there is no other way to run shelters don't want to provide lowno cost spayneuter services to anger private vets etc I don't want to oversimplify the author's arguments because Winograd provides than these two reasons however he fails to consider systemic roots of non human animal oppression The myriad of examples of horrendous abuse neglect and murder of animals in shelters clearly show those attendants hold littleno regard for the animals' lives In his insistence of spayingneutering as a solution to what problem? Winograd falls into the trap of treating non human animals as property by controlling their reproductive capacities


  6. says:

    This had to be one of the best books exposing the myth of pet overpopulation I've ever read In fact the ONLY one that exposes the status quo for standing by something that does not work What is even better is the author didn't just write about this he lived it and proved it and provides the ultimate solution to the problem of so called pet overpopulation and to ending all the killing in the false name of mercy


  7. says:

    at first this book was interesting but I lost interest because of all the lawyer speak to dry too bad it is an important subject


  8. says:

    A book full on passion short on hard data Very frustrating since much of what he writes about is not my experience in the animal care world His use of qualifiers possibly may be might etc set him up as someone who hasn't done his research Just because something has been done once twice even 10 times does not mean it can be done all the time Not to say we should not try to end the killing of healthy animals in shelters just that the book is poorly written due to the lack of hard data backing up his assertions This lack of data ruined the book for me


  9. says:

    Redemption is not an easy book but it’s an crucial one It’s full of information and for those who love animals it’s important information At this moment in time with legislation concerning the number of pets we own and breed increasing daily understanding what motivates the opposition in this complex issue is one of the keys to beating them But be prepared for some pain along the way–some in the form of statistics but most in the realization of how many animals could have been saved if shelters changed the way they were doing things Most of the book is an in depth explanation of the following quote “In the final analysis animals in shelters are not being killed because there are too many of them because there are too few homes or because the public is irresponsible Animals in shelters are dying for primarily one reason–because people in shelters are killing them” Redemption is divided into several sections–it begins with a history of animal sheltering in the United States starting with the birth of the “humane society” in the 19th century as one man’s compassionate vision It chronicles the movement as a whole showing how it slowly went wrong and somehow began to focus on killing animals rather than saving them finally ending up where we are nowIt explains how the blame was shifted from animal control agencies to the public and the animals themselves through initiatives like “LES”–Legislation Education and Sterilization LES supports laws to license cats and dogs animal limit laws required spayneuter legal prohibitions on the feeding of feral cats and gives animal control broad seizure powers Shelters weren’t taking the next step however and providing low cost spayneuter options nor were they trying to reduce shelter deaths They were too busy pointing fingersIt details the first success story in American sheltering–when Richard Avanzino took over the San Francisco SPCA and began implementing programs aimed at saving lives rather than just abiding by the status quo Policy changes during his tenure would eventually lead to no healthy animals being killed in San Francisco and greatly reduce overall shelter deathsAnd it’s the story of a man Nathan Winograd who saw the success of No Kill in San Francisco and took the lessons learned there to upstate New York where as Director of the Tompkins County SPCA he built on the success of San Francisco to create the first No Kill community in America Later he would move on to found the No Kill Advocacy Center with a goal of creating a No Kill nationIt lists the steps needed to achieve No Kill and where and how it worked–in urban American in rural America in the South etc and how various programs can lead the way there It tells you what you can do to helpThere are a lot of amazing ideas put forth in this book and I urge anyone who loves animals to read it There are several key concepts that Nathan goes back to again and again One is that No Kill is achievable if the people involved believe in it and work with a goal of saving lives Another is that the building blocks of No Kill are simple and that each piece helps volunteering at the shelter feral cat trap neuter return spayneuter before adoption fostering breed rescue etc These building blocks are things that individuals can contribute to each according to their abilities resources time etc We can all helpThis is a very personal book for me for a number of reasons I lived in Tompkins County until a few years ago and was very aware of the issues facing the SPCA and the problems they had with funding In the early 1990s the Tompkins County SPCA was handling both dog and cat control for the county with the towns funding some of the dog control Everything else was paid for by donations A task force was formed to look into licensing cats as a revenue stream to fund cat control I sat on that task force Ultimately the task force recommended against licensing as a revenue stream–but we discussed many of the same issues brought up in Redemption I met Nathan when he first became Director at the SPCA and had a front row seat as many of the events described in the book happened Later when Redemption was first published Nathan came back to Tompkins County and spoke at the SPCA as one of the stops on his book tour He is a fine speaker and is both passionate and knowledgeable about animals and the No Kill RevolutionI make no claim to being impartial about this one–my copy of Redemption is personally inscribed Highly highly recommended


  10. says:

    This book is filled with information you definitely don't want to hear but desperately need to Nathan Winograd is a former criminal prosecutor who left the law profession years back to pursue his life's work of restoring America to a nation that does not use murder as a response to dealing with abandoned feral or homeless animals This account on how we as a nation have fallen into a immoral trap of killing detatches much of Winograd's own work which is substantial and groundbreaking to say the least and instead focuses on a number of elements of the pet sheltering institution namely the founding of the ASPCA by Henry Bergh as a no kill organization in the late 1800s how it tragically moved away from this goal how our shelters today use false claims of pet over population inaccurate temperment tests and even rabies to rationalize the slaughter of millions of companion animals a year how animal rights groups like PETA have been major contributors to mass killing in shelters how your companion animal will be likely killed in most shelters withing 24 hours of arriving if they are lost and you will never receive a phone call how the shelter's blaming of the publics irresponsiblity has led to a majority of the killing and how No kills method of including the public and treating them with respect has had a 95% success rate in ending unneccesary killing This book is disturbing and upsetting but not without a silver lining and a blue print on making this a safer place for animals Its filled with real stories of success in No Kill in areas like San Francisco and Tompkins NY as well as real tragedies that have occurred within modern shelters and how it unfortunately takes these tragedies to open eyes The feral cat section is really incredible too This is a great book very readable and very neccesary in a world that has a lot of trouble treating living beings like such