No Kill Tuscaloosa
No Kill Tuscaloosa is an initiative by the Alabama SPCA and several organizations to decrease the intake and euthanasia rate at the Tuscaloosa Metro Animal shelter through researched and practical programs for the citizens of Tuscaloosa County. These programs were/are being developed by concerned citizens and animal rescuers who are keenly aware of the animal problems in Tuscaloosa through first-hand knowledge and experience.
Animals Saved in 2013
Spay & Neuter
The Alabama SPCA supports comprehensive spay and neuter programs and is actively working to bring more resources to Tuscaloosa County.
The Alabama SPCA is an advocate of comprehensive spay and neuter programs that span all class or income levels. Research by five veterinary schools regarding animal relinquishment in 12 shelters across the united states discovered that the distribution of owner surrenders to shelters was virtually equal between income levels. Only after an income level exceeded $75,000 was there a significant pattern of decrease in pet relinquishment. This study shows that it can be faulty to hold certain demographics responsible for a larger burden of the animal problem. These faulty assumptions often lead to programs and initiatives that in the end fail to have a large impact or any impact on improving the animal problem.
Another study recently conducted in California discovered that comprehensive spay and neuter programs had a large impact on shelter intake. Specifically they noticed that cat intake decreased dramatically. After researching the decline in cat intake it was discovered that the comprehensive programs allowed caretakers of smaller feral colonies who might normally be overlooked by Trap-Neuter-Release programs the ability to afford altering the colony themselves. This is turn lessened the burden on area TNR programs and also helped to dramatically reduced cat intake.
Distribution of income levels among relinquishing owners
Less than $12000
In 2004 a coalition between T-Town Paws, the West Alabama Humane Society, Alabamians Defending Animal Rights, and Tuscaloosa Metro Animal Shelter was formed. Maddie’s Fund donated 1.8 million dollars over a five year period funding an array of programs including a low cost spay and neuter program targeting low income households. In that five year period the program altered over 2,500 animals. However, shelter intake in that five year period increased by 10%. Unfortunately this is another example why limited spay and neuter programs are often ineffective in meeting the needs of communities. Communities are diverse and it’s impossible to determine the true root of an animal problem without detailed surveys and research. Sadly there is a complete lack of information and real data about the animal problem in Tuscaloosa and thus programs like Maddie’s often fail.
Shelter Intake Before
This is the shelter intake of Metro Animal Shelter the first year of Maddie’s Fund in Tuscaloosa.
Altered Cats and Dogs
The number of dogs and cats from low income homes altered by Maddie’s Project from 2005-2010.
Shelter Intake After
Shelter Intake on the last year of Maddie’s Fund in Tuscaloosa. This is a 10% increase.
Low Cost Programs
Many in Tuscaloosa have felt the frustration whether it be animal lover or animal rescuer at how difficult it is to find a low cost spay/neuter option in West Alabama. In fact those options to the public are almost non-existent. Instead often times many are forced to drive to Birmingham to find vets who will accept low cost certificates or ship their animals off to get altered at the low cost clinic in Irondale. However, there is a light at the end of the tunnel! The Alabama SPCA has had successful discussions with a few veterinarians in the Tuscaloosa area and believe that soon some vets will begin accepting the Alabama Animal Adoption Society’s spay/neuter certificates. To lean more about programs available to those in Tuscaloosa County click on the Spay/Neuter link on the primary navigation bar or the ‘learn more’ button above.
The Alabama SPCA believes a research and statistical based model is the most effective method to save animals. Unfortunately there is almost no statistical data in regards to the animal overpopulation problem in Tuscaloosa County.
Using other research models as a guide we have begun to develop several voluntary surveys with the support of Tuscaloosa Metro Animal Shelter. We hope to make these voluntary surveys available shortly for individuals surrendering animals to fill out. These surveys will be completely anonymous and not require any self identifying data. We plan to collect data in three month increments and publicly publish our findings on this website so both concerned citizens and community leaders will have access to it. It is our hope that a more accurate picture of the animal problem in Tuscaloosa will help us craft programs that will better meet the needs of the public at large and help reduce the intake at the shelter. Click the learn more button to read about our research.
Tuscaloosa Animal Programs
There are several animal related programs in the Tuscaloosa area. These programs are designed to help community as a whole by aiding people in the retention of their pets or helping to reduce the pet over population.
PET FOOD BANK
The Alabama SPCA runs a pet food bank that encompasses the Tuscaloosa area and surrounding counties. The program is designed to help people who are having difficulty caring for their pets due to difficult economic situations. The food bank provides temporary assistance to allow people to keep their pets until they can get back on their feet. Click the ‘Learn More’ link to read about the Pet Food Bank.
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TRAP NEUTER RELEASE
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On Average 8,200 animals enter Tuscaloosa Metro Animal Shelter each year.
MAKE IT OUT
Only an average of 1,850 animals make it out of the shelter each year, the rest are euthanized.