Utah News
6:16 pm
Mon March 31, 2014

New Campaign Aims For No-Kill Status For Utah’s Shelters

Utah’s kill rate for animals in shelters has dropped by nearly 30 percent in the last 15 years, and a new coalition of animal welfare groups is hoping to push that number even lower.

A new campaign titled No-Kill Utah was launched Sunday by the Best Friends Animal Society and a coalition of 36 other animal welfare groups.  Best Friends’ CEO Gregory Castle explained the goal is for the state to reach no-kill status, which means finding homes for at least 90 percent of the animals taken in by shelters.

“Ultimately, no-kill is when no healthy or treatable animals are being killed for want of a home,” Castle said.

Just 15 years ago the adoption rate was 43 percent. Utah was up to 70 percent in 2013 and is at 77 percent for this year so far.

“It’s come a long way, and that’s been mostly through the work of rescue organizations working with the shelters helping them find homes for the animals,” Castle explained.

Castle said continuing programs like Trap-Neuter-Return for feral cat populations and new relationships between municipal shelters and groups like Best Friends Animal Society will be part of the effort to decrease kill rates.

“We’re hoping it can happen in the next 5 years,” Castle said.

Castle said growing public disapproval of kill-shelters and support of animal rescue efforts helped push the group to form the No-Kill campaign.