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Animals In Print
The On-Line Newsletter

From 9 August 2002 Issue

How did Alachua County, Florida become "no-kill"?

A master plan for ending the euthanasia of healthy cats and dogs

By Margery Glickman

No More Homeless Pets, a coalition that includes the Alachua County Humane Society, Animal Services, veterinarians, University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine and several pet rescue groups, will receive a $3.1  million grant from Maddie's Fund to end the killing of healthy shelter dogs and cats within five years.

The goal of Maddie's Fund and the coalition is to increase sterilizations and adoptions so no healthy dog and cat will be homeless.  The initial installment of the grant is for $336,500.  If the first year goals are achieved the Foundation will make $3.1 million available to the Project in Alachua County.

Along with welfare oriented groups, animal rights based groups are working in the forefront  promoting spay / neuter / adoption programs. Melinda Fox, Vice President of Animal Activists of Alachua, says the group "promotes the goals and vision of the No More Homeless Pets campaign and is active in whatever ways we can be to show our support."

Some of the programs that will help meet those goals include the following:

1. Pets will be made available for adoption at many veterinary offices and at adopt-a-thons throughout the year.

2. The Alachua County Humane Society will increase the number of vouchers for free or reduced-cost sterilizations to animal guardians who meet financial requirements.

3. Operation Catnip will be expanded. In this program volunteer veterinarians spend one day a month sterilizing trapped feral cats that are brought to the University of Florida for surgery.

4. Maddie's Fund money will be used to pay veterinarians to spay and neuter feral cats in their offices.

5. The coalition will ask for broad-based community help. For example, businesses can put in links to No More Homeless Pets on their Websites.  Apartment managers will be asked to allow dogs, and cats in complexes where they had been prohibited.

Animal Activists of Alachua has made a commitment to continue  educating the local community and the University of Florida campus about the goals of the project by recruiting foster homes for homeless animals, by inviting members of No More Homeless Pets to speak on the U of F campus, and by assisting and promoting adopt-a-thons at the College of Veterinary Medicine.

On the web:
No more Homeless Pets Web:
Maddie's Fund:
Animal Activist of Alachua:

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Please send comments and submittals to the Editor: Linda Beane [email protected]

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