Numbers show steady decline in animals going into city shelters

Local News

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – The number of dogs and cats going into the two city shelters is the lowest it’s been in ages–down by almost half from a dozen years ago. So what’s behind the trend? The city thinks pet owners are just getting more responsible.

If you’ve strolled through the city’s shelters, you might notice the kennels are much less full than in years past. Back in 2007, more than 27,000 dogs and cats came into the city’s shelters.

In the past year, that’s down below 15,000. Adoption numbers have remained steady, but that’s understandable considering there are fewer animals up for adoption. Animal Welfare is very proud to see the euthanasia numbers at a new low. 

Twelve years ago, more than 13,000 animals were put down at city shelters. This past fiscal year, there were just over 1,200. The shelter says the numbers dropping have a lot to do with people being more responsible, but also the way the shelter is going about its operations. 

“The biggest change that’s happened here at the shelter, and I’ve said this numerous times, it’s primarily a culture change. You know, we’ve seen just a 180 in the culture here at the shelter.” 

The Animal Welfare director says they only euthanize animals that are sick or have behavioral issues. He says their behavioral team has really been focusing on helping the animals under high stress, to possibly get them into foster homes or enrichment programs so they can get adopted. 

They also are focusing on disease control, now having vet techs at intake to help curb the spread of illnesses in the shelters. In the last year, the city dropped its prices for spay/neuter, microchipping and vaccines to allow more people to have access. 

Also, when animal control officers are in the field, if they come across animals that haven’t been vaccinated or microchipped, they will do it on site.

To check out more Animal Welfare Department statistics, click here.

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