Understanding The No-Kill Initiative

At Nine Lives Rescue Mission, and in many animal welfare organizations throughout the country, euthanasia is defined purely as an act of mercy. Euthanizing a pet is considered only when veterinary and/or behavioral experts have determined that an animal’s condition is untreatable and the animal has little or no chance of recovering an acceptable quality of life.

This is why Nine Lives Rescue Mission and other organizations purposefully describe themselves as dedicated to no-kill. No-kill organizations euthanize animals who are suffering irremediably. They do not kill healthy or adoptable animals and label it “euthanasia” to make it more palatable.

The no-kill movement started as a radical notion, but today it is becoming mainstream. The goal is to correct our collective failure to value and protect the lives of homeless pets — lives that matter.

Those dedicated to no-kill want to end the killing of healthy and adoptable animals in shelters. To be considered no-kill, a shelter must be saving 90 percent or more of the animals it takes in.

Getting to the goal

Nine Lives Rescue Mission is leading no-kill efforts around the country through lifesaving programs designed to help stop the killing of animals in shelters. These programs include national initiatives focused on shutting down puppy mills, fighting breed-discriminatory legislation, and keeping community cats safe and out of shelters. To accomplish its objectives, Nine Lives Rescue Mission has formed coalitions of animal welfare groups and a national network of animal welfare partners, all unified under a distinct call to action: Save Them All.

Promoting pet adoption: By encouraging people to adopt rather than buy their pets, we help increase the number of pets leaving shelters.

Supporting spay/neuter: By promoting sterilization and providing spay/neuter resources wherever they are needed, we help decrease the number of animals entering shelters.

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