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I have a huge problem and really I need help solving it.

where I live and probably where you live too, there is a huge problem with stay cats and dogs. Most are gathered up by the cities animal control office and killed. Hundreds and thousands a week.

I thought the private animal shelters were the answer so I began volunteering my time and money at couple in my hometown only to find out they are corrupt.

There is little or no regard for the health and welfare of the animals and it is all about the numbers and the money.

I believe in a no kill society and am giving everything I have to the idea but not making any progress. There are many other volunteers who agree with me and will support me, but I do not know what to do.

I've gathered enough information to understand that the owner is making a living from the shelter, and keeping all the money instead of spending it on sick, injured animals that are suffering. How do I change a corrupt private shelter? I don't want to report the owner and risk the lives of the cats that are there.

I came here with my problem because the people on this website are among the most intelligent and reasonable I know. I am open to any suggestions, please help if you can.

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    Dec 19 2012: No, your English isn't bad. Somehow Maddies sounded like an Australian word to me. Jesse, I just called my local police department in Glendale, California. They told me that in Glendale, if I reported animal cruelty, the first people to come out and decide if there really is animal cruelty would be the police themselves. So perhaps you need to contact your local police.

    Another possibility would be to write your local newspaper, a second would be for all the volunteers to quit at the same time. But if you really want change, I think you need to find out what people really have the power and ask for their help. Very likely it is the police.
    • Dec 21 2012: Great advice. Each sounds well thought, thank you. I like the idea of organizing the volunteers. There has actually been discussion of just that.
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        Dec 21 2012: Yeah, although he may be able to just get more volunteers. I still think you need to find out who has the power to stop animal cruelty, because after all it is against the law. If I get my energy up, I'll contact Buffalo, NY city hall or police and ask who would officially investigate animal cruelty. Don't worry, I won't give your name or describe the situation specifically, I'll just ask generically what a person would do if they want to report animal cruelty. Or you can do this.

        Jess, you have a nice sensivitivity. Maybe you could be a veterinarian. Where are you going with your life, or what is your ambition?
  • Dec 17 2012: You're to be commended for your love and concern for animals. Here's what you need to do with your noble cause and concern. You need to seek out people of like passion and work together to create a facility or an environment that would translate your vision to a reality. Seek investors or donors to expedite the reality of your dream. Godspeed.
    • Dec 18 2012: thank you for the kindness.. there are other volunteers at the shelter and in the community that are with me.. so your response is valid. Thank you
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    Dec 16 2012: Here's a solution from left of centre.Strays should be rounded up but rather than killed they should be neutered and released back on the street. The environment in your local area can only support so many strays and if most of them are neutered there numbers should be fixed. Capturing and killing some of the strays just makes room for the others to reproduce.
    • Dec 18 2012: hi Peter, there is a spay and neuter clinic in my town that is funded by a grant (Maddies Fund) that does exactly what you suggest. Personally I have brought over 25 strays that I've humanely trapped to them. About half got released because I could not find a place for them. The other half I was able to find homes or room at the shelter. Thank you for the advice.
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    Dec 16 2012: I would go ahead and report him. Even if a few animals get killed in the short run, in the long run wouldn't you save a lot more?
    • Dec 18 2012: I recently read an article about the Maddies fund that funds the local shelter I'm speaking of, and they do not want to have anything to do with policing or investigating abuses, they said that was up to the local community. Thank you for you advice!
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        Dec 18 2012: Sorry, Jesse, what is a Maddies fund? Wouldn't there be some government agency that would investigate a shelter where animals are being treated cruelly? There certainly is here in the United States.
        • Dec 19 2012: is my english that bad?! I live in the united states too lol. I live in Buffalo NY. Maddies Fund is probably the biggest grant organization in the country. They are private not government and award shelters money for adoptions. Lots of money. The probably is the money isn't being invested back into the shelter. The president/founder of the shelter is making a living from it while animals are suffering and in need of medical attention. Thank you for your thoughts
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    • Dec 18 2012: Thank you Carolyn. All of your suggestion are great and made me smile. I did catnap one cat and took him to my vet. He had stomatitis so bad that he could no longer eat, lost a ton of weight and stopped grooming himself. My vet pulled his teeth and I nursed him back to full healthy. I never did return him to the shelter, I adopted him. But I will consider you idea, thank you!
  • Dec 14 2012: Well, the reason some countries don't have problems with stray cats and dogs is because they neuter animals. So what you can do is introduce a program with the majority, or all of the shelter's funds, where the shelter offers to neuter people's pets for free or for a small fee that most people in the area can afford. If you convince the locals of the usefulness of neutering and tell the donors (who already know about the usefulness of neutering) about your plan then the shelter has no choice but to implement the program. Because neutering is a procedure that can easily be quantified it is very hard for the shelter to steal money from the program, after all, the donors can easily see how much money the shelter spends per procedure and figure out if they're getting conned. All you have to do is make sure that you, or someone you trust is counting the number of procedures and reporting this number to the donors periodically.
    • Dec 19 2012: as I mentioned in another reply, there is a spay/neuter clinic for people to catch, spay, and release ferals. I do that as well, only thing is, some of the cats and dogs I catch are not feral, they are just stray/abandoned. Those ones I bring to the shelter I volunteer at.

      There needs to be more education though, each generation is more compassionate, and smarter.
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    Dec 14 2012: The promotion of animal-keeping in society is something I have a big issue with. Primarily because many owners don't *keep* their pets, they largely leave them to roam the region unsupervised and unspayed, and this is where much of the issue stems from.

    You say that you don't want to report the owner, but its worth knowing that reporting doesn't necessarily equate to having the centre shut down. In most cases it will lead to an inspection, fines, frequent checks and then closure, only if the requirements aren't met.

    If you can verify that the issue in question is as high as you believe
    (Ideally evidence of how many animals are caught per month or proof of the government/council spending on this issue and the centres) then you could always contact your government/council and promote the idea of a basic advertising campaign and temporary subsidies for animal spaying.
    This would theoretically decrease the number of animals over time (thus less of the issue in question).

    If you can verify the issue enough, the government/council could infact consider it if it will save money in the long-run, (such as health insurance companies paying for yearly examinations and contraception, because treating late-stage illness and pregnancy are vastly more expensive than all the exams and contraception combined).


    The only immediate(ish) answer would be to
    1. Volunteer in all of the local shelters
    2. Get significant levels over evidence over successive days-weeks-months
    3. Open your own shelter
    4. Continuously leak out the evidence in pieces, consistently reporting the other shelters until they're forced to close down.
    5. Gain all of the animals and monopolize the industry.

    Unfortunately theres no quick or cheap solution that I'm aware of.
    • Dec 19 2012: I already Googled shelters in my area and contacted every one for the very reason you suggest. None of them were really operating, they did not have a building or cats. They supposedly had a "network of foster homes" apparently scamming money from grant and government agencies is big business.

      I have been volunteering with this shelter for about 8 years. I do work public adoption events and I clean at the shelter on my day off. I not only donate time and care, I donate money, buy supplies etc..

      The longer I am there, the more I see and learn. There are cats being left to die and suffer when all they need is care. But the money is being hoarded.

      I want to open my own shelter, I have started reading on filing for 501c and gaining non-profit status. I don't have a lot of money, I work full time plus overtime for what I have. I like all of your ideas, you have given me much to consider, thank you for sharing!!
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    Dec 14 2012: One option you have is to move yourself to one of the many rescues that does care about animals. You don't want to be part of a corrupt operation, and as you are a volunteer, I am sure you will find another that is happy for your help, particularly if you are a foster placement for the animals who are waiting for permanent homes.

    You can do a lot of good through your work.
    • Dec 19 2012: Believe it or not, there aren't any around my part of ny. I have been in contact with all and I am working at the most legit and largest one.
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        Dec 19 2012: Now that I see you have been there eight years, I think you probably know more about this than anyone.

        Perhaps you could have a confidential conversation with your veterinarian to solicit advice plus an anonymous contact with the ASPCA.