Coffee Break: What One Thing Would You Accomplish?
If you could accomplish only one thing for animal welfare and protection in your community, what would it be? And why does your area need it? That’s the question we asked for this issue’s Coffee Break. You responded by giving us some innovative solutions to your pet peeves. We heard about your dreams for more widely available spay/neuter programs, better humane education, more responsible owners, creative adoption programs for hard-to-place pets, and better cooperation among the people working to save animals.
If I could accomplish only one thing, I would like to see animal welfare organizations work together for the good of the animals, not only in my community but all over the world. We have differences, but if we could just put them aside and agree to disagree but work for the good of the animals, think what a great job for them we could do!
—Jean Meyer, adoption coordinator/animal caretaker, Friends of Keokuk Animal Services, Keokuk, Iowa
I sincerely believe that the main thing that can make a “long-term” difference in a community is to get politically active and make a humane, professional animal shelter a priority to the city/county government. Ultimately, open-admission shelters handle the most animals in a community, so it is imperative that the community have a plan that is progressive and informed on the latest information that Animal Sheltering provides. It takes citizen participation and demands to make that happen. I could rescue my entire life and not impact animals in the same way as if I make the local powers that be recognize the importance of having a professional and humane animal control department that involves the community in solving the pet owner/population and cruelty issues in a community. So if you are not satisfied about your local shelter, get politically active and make it a priority to your local politicians, or run for office yourself!
—Laura Lanza, community initiative director, ASPCA Lake Charles, Louisiana
To see and respond to the latest Coffee Break question, check out animalsheltering.org/coffeebreak.