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Los Angeles' Animal Shelters Are On Track To Become No Kill By Year's End

(Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
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The Los Angeles City Council is doubling-down on its goal of eradicating euthanasia from all city-operated animal shelters by year's end. On Wednesday, the City Council voted to increase city investment in a "comprehensive strategy" to meet the goal by December 31, notes KPCC.

“We enacted several policies that will get us there,"Jeff Ebenstein, Director of Policy and Legislation for City Councilman Paul Koretz, who co-sponsored the motion, told KABC. "It’s not going to happen overnight but we increased funding to spay and neuter, that was a big part of it. We also put a ban on puppy mills in the city of Los Angeles that require all pet stores to use shelter animals.”

“We try to make it as reasonable as possible for people to adopt,” Councilman Koretz told KPCC. “We also only save money by not having to euthanize animals, which is a costly process as well.”

Los Angeles first began its pursuit of becoming a no-kill city in 2003, under then-mayor James Hahn. The goal was set for 2008, but was not reached. Then in 2011, the city restarted its efforts to become no-kill with an end-goal of 2017.

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The current motion defines a no-kill shelter as one that does not euthanize 90% or more of its healthy animals. According to Best Friends Animal Society in Los Angeles, the city was at an 82.6% save rate for 2016, and has hit an 89.4% save rate for the first quarter of 2017.

"Best Friends is thrilled about the passing of the No Kill Resolution by LA City Council," Michelle Sathe, PR specialist for Best Friends, told LAist. "It's a strong statement that the city's leadership is committed to finding homes for the adoptable dogs and cats that come into LA Animal Services shelters. The city is almost at the 90% save rate benchmark to be considered no kill. The goal of Best Friends' NKLA initiative has been to become no kill by the end of 2017, so it's really exciting to watch that vision become a reality."

LAist reached out to the city Department of Animal Services, but has not heard back by publication of this article.