Manatee County, FL — Last April, Manatee County Animal Services (MCAS) committed to becoming a No Kill open-admission shelter, following a growing trend of shelters which pledge to save 90% or more of all animals that enter their doors. But they can’t do it alone. Chief Kris Weiskopf with MCAS desperately needs foster families to make this goal into a reality.
“It’s a marathon that we’re doing. It’s definitely not a sprint,” said Weiskopf in an interview with ABC 7.
Time and again communities nationwide have shown that this is possible, but it can only happen if the community bands together. Foster homes and community involvement are the backbone of successful No Kill open admission shelters. Foster homes need only have an extra room in their homes and some extra love to give a pet in need. Most successful foster programs match the foster family with the type of pet they’d like to foster.
A family that is trying to teach their children the “miracle of life” in a guilt-free manner can choose to foster a pregnant cat or dog. If people want a rambunctious puppy or kitten without committing to a decade or more of care, they can foster puppies or kittens that need a little time to grow, or perhaps recuperate from a minor illness. There are always dogs, puppies, cats, and kittens that need fostering for one reason or another. Some might be injured and need a place to heal, others might be too stressed out in a shelter environment and need a quieter place to stay for a little while.
A foster home gives the gift of life to a homeless pet. MCAS wants to save every adoptable and treatable animal that comes through its doors. They want to help the behaviorally challenged learn how to act right. They want to help the injured recover and move on to loving homes. They want to save underage puppies and kittens from death by letting them live long enough to become adoptable. In his first column about “A View to No-Kill” Weiskopf wrote, “We believe there are more people in Manatee County who want a dog or cat than we have dogs and cats available in our shelter.”
The trick is keeping these animals alive long enough to find their forever homes, and fostering an animal goes a long way towards achieving that.
“Chief Weiskopf says despite the challenges, Manatee County Animal Services will reach no kill status. ‘Every animal that comes in here deserves a right to go back out alive; that’s the whole goal that we have.’ He says he’s confident Suncoast residents will reach out and show their support,” wrote ABC 7.
If you’d like to foster or adopt a pet from Manatee County Animal Services, please call them at 941-742-5933.
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