It's news that animal lovers in this area would dearly love to see. The City of San Antonio Animal Care Services has reached "no-kill" status for cats in March and April, according to a posting made earlier today on their Facebook page. For March and April, they managed a 92% live placement rate for cats and kittens.
The shelter has accomplished this through a combination of spay/neuter programs, and various programs to promote cat adoptions and placements in the community.
90% is generally accepted as the standard to be met to be considered "No-Kill".
The dogs are not far behind. In March and April, 82% of the dogs and puppies admitted to the shelter left alive.
San Antonio Animal Care Services is very active in adoption events, and partners with rescue groups and other non-profit organizations, as well as with corporations such as Petco and Petsmart, to promote adoptions and to help educate the community on how to be a responsible pet owner.
The number of shelters striving for the "No-Kill" brass ring is growing nationwide, and does not seem to be limited by available resources. The sheer commitment of shelter leadership, staff, and volunteers to operate a no-kill shelter appears to be the primary factor determining whether a shelter becomes no-kill. The county-run Washington-Wilkes Animal Shelter in rural Georgia has been operating as a no-kill shelter for a number of years now, despite the fact that the county has very limited resources to fund animal services. Like San Antonio, Washington-Wilkes achieved this by aggressively promoting spay/neuter for cats and dogs, and by actively promoting adoptions.
Other rural counties in South Carolina and Georgia are following a similar trend as they strive to reduce the number of healthy animals euthanized. Some shelters that five or six years ago had euthanasia rates exceeding 90% have cut those rates in half.
Hopefully other counties will jump on the no-kill bandwagon soon too.