Critter Talk Column

How many of you would like to see a No-Kill Brown County? I know the folks at the Corinne T. Smith Animal Center (CTSAC) would. In fact, they want it more than you do; the problem is that it requires a lot of community support.

That’s where you come in! Right now CTSAC is full to the brim with pit bull type dogs and kittens, kittens, kittens. No-Kill Brown County needs a shelter actively working with rescue groups and seeking adopters, but that is a belated approach to the problem.

There aren’t nearly enough potential homes for the pits and other large dogs that come through the shelter. Small dogs can often be sent to rescue groups, but for large dogs that happens much less often. They need adopters. And, pit bull type dogs are rarely adopted and almost never accepted into rescue groups. When they come to CTSAC, their days are probably numbered. There are very few options for them, no matter how sweet and goofy they are.

The fault for that lies, not with the dogs or the shelter, but with the folks in the community that claim to love this breed. Half the pit bull owners in our area seem to want to breed their dogs. I suppose it’s easier than just getting a job to support yourself.

I personally don’t understand how you can breed a dog to sell the puppies to make money, and sleep at night knowing the majority of those pups will end up being euthanized at an animal shelter. How can you possibly say you love the breed, when you breed them knowing they will very possibly lead hard lives and then die unloved? I’m baffled.

If you love your dog, get him or her fixed. That is a huge step toward a no-kill community. Get him fixed, keep ID on his collar, don’t let him roam, and keep him as part of your family for his entire life. If all pet owners would do those simple things, Brown County could become no-kill-for-time-or-space tomorrow.

Cats and kittens come to CTSAC every day in amazing numbers. If you are a cat-lover, the same sorts of things apply to cats. Get your pet cats fixed and microchipped, when they are missing don’t wait weeks to start checking the shelter for them, and let them spend their lives with you.

Feral cats are a special issue. They are unsocialized and can’t be adopted into a home. If you take a feral cat to the shelter you should understand that it will almost certainly be euthanized. The way to keep that from happening is to trap them, but instead of being them to the shelter take them to your veterinarian to be fixed and vaccinated for rabies.

That is known as TNR (trap/neuter/return). After the cat is spayed or neutered, release it back where it came from to live out its life. The cats can quite literally go about their rat killin’, and shelter staff aren’t forced to euthanize them for lack of any alternative.

The CTSAC Spay-ghetti Dinner is coming up on Thursday, Oct. 13, and it’s an easy and delicious way to help keep animals out of the shelter. 100 percent of the proceeds from this event goes toward the spaying and neutering of pets of low-income Brown County residents and for TNR of feral cats.

Tickets are only $10 each, and are available at CTSAC, KOXE, Steves’ Market, and Wendlee Broadcasting.

For more information, call 325-646-0617.