PETA – the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals – is cited by concerned city officials who are under pressure to implement “no-killing” policies at the Manteca animal shelter.
PETA’s position on no-kill shelters is included in a presentation prepared at the request of City Council that will be given at Tuesday’s meeting.
Over the past few months, several groups such as Better World Rescue as well as other volunteers have expressed concern to City Council that Manteca may not be providing adequate services for the dogs and cats in their care at the city shelter.
They also raised concerns about policies and fees that they say do not help efforts to reduce the population of unwanted pets and place unclaimed dogs and cats in homes.
Manteca Mayor Ben Cantu has come out strongly in support of the city’s pursuit of a no-kill shelter for the municipal facilities on Wetmore Street and South Main Street.
Cantu criticized the pre-prepared PowerPoint presentation included in the agenda folder for Tuesday’s 7 p.m. council meeting as failing to present both sides of the issue. The mayor said he has studied the position of PETA as well as three other animal organizations that take an opposing position and embrace no-kill shelters.
He said the report “is typical” of city staff finding reasons not to do something rather than putting a workable solution in place.
Cantu has pledged to push for solutions that will help eliminate “the short time to death” for a number of animals cared for at the city’s shelter.
The mayor said the minimum initial steps must involve the city increasing the availability of neutering and low-cost neutering, as well as stepping up efforts to get more animals adopted.
A Staff Report Explains Why PETA
opposes no-kill shelters
In addition to explaining what services are in place, the staff presentation seems to argue against Manteca pursuing a no-kill refuge.
The presentation notes that PETA, with more than 659,600 members and supporters in California, has expressed the following concerns about no-kill shelters:
* These policies have been shown to have unintended consequences that harm animals and endanger the public.
* If non-elimination policies actually helped animals, PETA would be their strongest supporter.
* However, when these policies are put in place and animal shelters refuse to help people or prevent them from doing the right thing, animals and the public are victimized.
* It’s no surprise that residents in communities across the country are growing frustrated when shelters with no-slaughter policies refuse animals, refuse to provide important services and fail to protect the community , all to make their “live release” stats eye-catching.
*Animals rejected by shelters don’t just disappear. They die slowly and painfully after being abandoned on the streets – often producing and creating even more homeless and stray animals – or are cruelly killed.
* “Life at any cost” policies fail to address the root cause of the homeless animal crisis and instead subject animals to far worse fates than if they had a peaceful end.
Among the challenges, according to the staff report, the city would face with a no-kill shelter:
*The number of dogs and cats involved.
*Animals posing public safety concerns due to behavioral traits.
*Animals requiring constant care due to their general state of health. This includes seriously injured strays.
*The inability to slaughter animals released for euthanasia.
* Wildlife nuisance.
nuts and bolts
The report discusses the inner workings of animal services:
*There is one full-time Animal Services Manager, two full-time Animal Services Officers and three part-time Kennel Assistants, although one position is currently vacant.
*The Manteca Police Department Animal Services Division includes Field Services and Animal Shelter.
*Manteca had previously entered into a contract with the City of Lathrop, but that contract expired on September 30, 0222.
*Field services impound animals; taking reports of vicious, abused or nuisance animals, investigating animal bites; and testifies in court, if necessary.
*The shelter houses animals that have been seized, impounded or turned over while trying to locate owners or new owners.
* The shelter works closely with contracted veterinary clinics to ensure the health of all impounded animals and ensure they are neutered or neutered prior to release.
*Efforts are being made with rescue organizations to find homes for as many animals as possible.
*The shelter has two playgrounds. The shelter staff rotates the dogs throughout the day in the yards.
* Dog playgroups are also located in the courtyards. This is where dog-friendly dogs have playtime in the yard with the shelter staff. This is done to alleviate kennel stress – a term used when dogs encounter mental and emotional stress by experiencing strain during or after a stay at the kennel.
The report also describes the process for admitting animals to the shelter:
* Types of contributions include Owner’s Allowance, Euthanasia Allowance, Nuisance Wildlife, Deceased Animals, and Stray Takes including Dogs, Cats, Birds, Reptiles, etc.
*Landlord surrender requires a $25 fee for a dog or cat and proof of residency.
*The euthanasia discount requires a letter from a veterinarian recommending euthanasia as well as a $50 fee for the service.
*Spay and neuter fees are $170-$320+ for spayed dogs, $140-$230+ for spayed dogs, $120 for spayed cats, and $95 for spayed cats .
*Feline Pain Injections are $15.
*Feline pain tablets are $20.
*Canine pain tablets are $21.
*E-collars are $15.
New Efforts More
New efforts for the Animal Services Division include:
* Try to organize weekly pet adoption events. The next one will be on Thursday, October 27 at the Barks and Brews event on Maple Avenue.
*Creation of a Facebook page for the animal shelter.
* Schedule visits to other shelters for staff to assess best practices.
* Obtaining a grant of $40,000 to invest in the shelter’s services and programs.
* Exploration of new programs and accommodation possibilities.
* Held an annual “Clear the Shelter” event.
Recommendations made by staff include:
*Set up a reception program to free up space at the refuge.
* Develop volunteer programs.
* Pursue a low-cost sterilization and sterilization program.
* A microchipping program for pets.
*Search for the possibility of trapping, castration, vaccination and return program for feral cats.
*Increase FY 2023-24 budget to include Veterinary Services, additional staff (one additional full-time animal services office and two part-time staff to assist with programs).
*Possibility of seeking to establish a non-profit organization to assist the Manteca Animal Sanctuary with funding.
* Eliminate the trapping of nuisance wildlife with the acceptance of nuisance wildlife.
The report also explains how the shelter’s cooling system works.
To contact Dennis Wyatt, email [email protected]