The state is second only to Delaware in reaching no-kill status, which requires that 90% of animals are either returned to owners, transferred, or adopted.
Michigan is officially a no-kill state for shelter animals, WILX TV reported yesterday. To be considered a no-kill state, 90% of shelter animals must either be returned to owners, transferred to other shelters and rescue organizations, or adopted, and the state reached that goal in 2018. Michigan Pet Fund Alliance (MPFA) is the only statewide organization whose mission is to end the killing of homeless healthy or treatable cats and dogs in the state, and to achieve that mission, they offer a variety of programs and technical assistance to shelters and rescue groups, including grants, awards, mentoring, networking hands-on training and shelter assessments. The Alliance also organizes grants to provide rescue organizations up to $200 toward veterinary bills for each special needs or elderly animal they pull from shelters.
“This is an amazing first for our state,” Deborah Schutt, MPFA founder and chairperson, told WILX TV. “When the shelters in a state combine to meet the 90% target, that state is considered No-Kill for shelter animals. Only Delaware, which has three shelters, compared to 174 in Michigan, also reached the No Kill benchmark last year.” However, while 90% is the benchmark to be considered no-kill, the organization is now moving towards ensuring that no healthy shelter animal needs to be put down. The state also still has some communities who need help saving animal lives. “While it’s exciting to see Michigan as a state achieve No-Kill status by reaching the 90% goal, we still have a few communities struggling to save lives, especially with cats,” Schutt said. “We will continue to work with shelters and rescue organizations to implement best practices, decrease overall length of stay in the shelter and improve the quality of life for homeless pets while they are in a shelter.”
To be a no-kill state, 90 percent of animals must be returned to owners, transferred to other shelters and rescues or adopted. https://t.co/CZDcZ9KY5e— Local 4 WDIV Detroit (@Local4News) September 9, 2019
The Michigan Pet Fund Alliance began tracking statewide statistics in 2009, from annual reports submitted by shelters to the Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development. Reports revealed that more than 120,000 dogs and cats were losing their lives in shelters in the state every year. Happily, that number has decreased drastically to just over 13,000 for the entire year of 2018.
A helpful list of no-kill animal shelters in Michigan can be found here.