More fuzzy math on pet homelessness

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When I was engaged in some online research last week, I ran across a blogger’s post concerning the rate of death in animal shelters. I thought about linking to the site, but I don’t want to increase the hits on it at all. In addition, the information features basically the same misinformation spread by others.

This one led by suggesting only two percent of dogs die in shelters every year and he linked to webpages for the ASPCA, HSUS and American Pet Products Association. But the writer is twisting the numbers. To compare the total population of dogs with the numbers euthanized goes to the same fuzziness the greyhound racing industry uses on the rate of deaths and injuries, compared to the number of races it conducts each year.

The very link the blogger points to from the ASPCA reports – “” Approximately 5 million to 7 million companion animals enter animal shelters nationwide every year, and approximately 3 million to 4 million are euthanized (60 percent of dogs and 70 percent of cats). “”

The writer links to these numbers and then later claims it is a lie that there is a pet overpopulation problem in pets. Five to 7 million companion animals entering shelters every and 3 to 4 million dying is a real problem. And it’s not just pit bulls and mutts.

And the ASPCA reports –  “” There are about 5,000 community animal shelters nationwide that are independent; there is no national organization monitoring these shelters. “” So the numbers basically reflect municipal shelters. Are we even sure what the actual numbers are?

I know there are some animal-welfare advocates who also claim we don’t have an overpopulation problem. They suggest it’s more about increasing adoptions and promoting spay-neuter. But that’s just one side of the equation. When 4 to 5 million pets are dying each year – that’s a REAL PROBLEM – one being caused by irresponsible people, irresponsible breeders and greyhound racing.