Why choose death when there is a LIFE alternative?

So in the past two weeks Pets Alive has pulled 108 cats, kittens, and mamas from the NYC ACC (Animal Care & Control), including this little bottle baby today.

After we found out about a kitten being euthanized there with no opportunity for rescue to pull, we decided we weren’t going to stand by and watch any more kittens die.

Why should we? There is no need to. Kittens are super highly adoptable and they are adoptable easily for the next year or so. So even if it took us a while to place them we were still going to be able to do so. PLUS we had just opened some brand new rooms for cats and had plenty of space. What better way to use it than save the lives of kittens? Lives that had barely started and were already at risk of being snuffed out at the ACC.

As the kittens arrived we were thrilled to greet each one. Some went to PAW (Pets Alive Westchester) and some to PAM (Pets Alive Middletown). We were thrilled to welcome each one. Most were orphaned, some had mothers still nursing them. We accepted them all.

Then we saw MORE mama’s and kittens on the kill list at the ACC and we reached out to take them too.

In the end we took in 108 cats and three or four dogs came along too. The email exchanges went back and forth and one of them said this:

>>> We have 7 nursing moms w/ kittens and one pregnant cat that may not be able to be spayed…if can be spayed, could you still take? If not¬†and too far along, could you take pregnant? <<<

Oh my. A pregnant cat that was so far along she “might not be able to be spayed”. For goodness sake! DON’T SPAY HER! We will taker her and give her the opportunity to have her babies and we will find them all homes. We don’t support late term spaying when the mother’s hormones and body are already preparing for birth and we don’t support aborting kittens that are viable to live outside the womb at that age. This isn’t good for the mother and it certainly isn’t good for the kittens. So I answered this:

>>Please, please do not spay pregnant cat.
We can take all the moms with kittens and PREGNANT cat!<<

Whew. Glad we found out about her in time. And so our good friend, and industrious volunteer John, went and stopped first in the Brooklyn shelter to pick up some of the cats, kittens and dogs and then went to the Manhattan shelter to pick up the rest of the cats, kittens and dogs we were taking.

His ride back to Pets Alive was filled with hysterical tweets:

>>One of the boxes grew a leg.






>>Uh oh. Potential escapee:






>>We have a breach in the containment systems!






We were all laughing and excited. Lots of staff came to meet John and help unload and settle all the kittens and mamas in.
That’s when we discovered that the ACC had SPAYED the late term pregnant mama cat. Spayed her and killed all her babies.

Not only that, but because they are so short staffed and have so few vets they went the extra mile to kill this cats kittens. They brought her to the mobile ASPCA clinic and had THEM spay her and abort her kittens.

Why? Why would they do this if they knew she and her future kittens had a safe place to go?
Yes I understand the argument that there are so many cats and all that jazz, and if they were a kill shelter and she was staying there with them, and they hoped to try to get her a home… well, I would never support this, but I could understand their reasoning. But it makes NO SENSE to do this when there was another alternative being offered. We offered all those kittens a chance at LIFE. Why would the ACC and the ASPCA deprive those kittens of that chance? Not only that – they had to go SO FAR OUT OF THEIR WAY to kill them – to get them to the ASPCA because they were too backed up to kill them there?

Not only that, but remember I told you we said we would take ALL the kittens and mamas?
Indeed had we not just pulled 108?

Three of the kittens we were supposed to get…we got paperwork for, but no kittens.
I don’t know.
I haven’t had time to really review the paperwork.
But maybe this post-it note explains whey they aren’t here.
The ACC killed them.

If you can’t read that it says “THESE 3 WERE PUT TO SLEEP“.
They had another place to go.
Hey ACC, why not just call it like it is?

Oh, and one other thing.

The cat that was breaking out of the box on the way home?

That was the mama cat that had her babies aborted.

Who can blame her?

Filed in Animal Rescue, No-kill by kerry on May 24, 2012.  There are 12 Comments

12 Responses to “Why choose death when there is a LIFE alternative?”

  1. Gisselle Says:

    Poor girl. These people are horrible :( Rest In Peace little babies. Thank you Kerry and John and all of the staff at Pets Alive & Pets Alive West for doing everything you can and saving so many lives.

  2. Camille Hankins - No Kill New York Says:

    Just when I think I cannot get any angrier at the NYC ACC, I read something like this blog and my blood boils. You are correct to call it MURDER, when these poor souls had a place to go and instead they were coldly and heartlessly dispatched. This blog needs to be circulated far and wide. I think it should also be sent to every New York State Assembly Member with a note urging support of life saving shelter reform legislation CAARA. Thank you for all you do to save animals from NYC’s disgraceful slaughterhouse, NYC ACC.

  3. Wayne Johnson Ph.D. Says:

    You guys just do consistently great work. Part of it is your respect for ALL life, fetal or extra-fetal.

  4. Daniela Says:

    It almost sounds like they were trying to make the point that they were still in control. What is your stance on early pregnancy spays? Say the cat is a week or so pregnant? I find this one a hard one because I can see both sides of the issue for early term spays. Late term I can’t support.

  5. John McDonald Says:

    Taken from the web page of the AC&C of NYC

    Our Values
    “We value the integrity of each employee, volunteer and partner contributing to the professional delivery of excellent customer service and the humane treatment of animals, in an atmosphere of open, honest communication, predicated on our trust in and respect for each other.”

    Our Mission

    “To promote and protect the health, safety and welfare of pets and people in New York City.”

    For an agency that is engaged in animal welfare their value system is woefully inadequate and in this instance have failed miserablly in theur mission.

  6. vickie Says:

    So sorry …NYACC are so disgusting..I can’t fathom why anyone would work there..Sending good vibes to your organization so they all get homes…I hope to see someday that all animal control is shut down….

  7. Rebecca Says:

    I live in Manhattan. Many years ago I used to rescue dogs from the CACC. If you think this place is disgusting now, it was a whole worse then. It has gotten better but it’s far cry from what it should be. I wish I knew what the answer was? What’s done is done. But since you do pull animals from there if you keep calling them on this and take them to task maybe they will stop doing it. Rome wasn’t built in a day. It’s a bad situation. What’s so sad it’s never the animal it’s their owner that gives them a death sentence by dumping them there or just leaving them on the street.

  8. The Myth I Hate The Most | In Dog We Trust Says:

    […] the Executive Director of Pets Alive, wrote a great blog about this, and I agree with her – and I think most No Kill people do. I really can’t support […]

  9. Ellen Says:

    What a horrific week this has been for the animals of New York. I did not believe that it could get any worse until I stumbled upon your post. I cannot the tears, but as they began my newest pup, Brooke came across the room to comfort me. So many people could not understand why I was so nervous and uneasy awaiting her spay and transport from Brooklyn to my vet’s office back in January. The four days between visiting her at BCC and her arrival to safe ground were among the longest of my life. Why? Because the NYCACC does not respect life. They take it when there are other options. They do not have the animals’ best interests at heart. Brooklyn, my rescue girl, and I join you and the mother cat in your sorrow and anger. I can only pray that the mother is healthy and recovers from this. I know that those who have endured and witnessed this will not. The NYCACC must be revamped, but the politicians do not care. I have written and received no response. It is time to involve the media and publicize all that goes on. We can no longer stay silent.

  10. Lori Scinto Says:

    Coming from a Manhattan ACC volunteer, I can say that their practices seem to get more despicable with each passing day. They are outright MASSACRING totally adoptable animals there. It has reached a level of insanity, well described by your blog post. The ACC should be renamed the ACM – Animal Control & Murder. It’s that simple.

  11. Ellen EMerson Says:

    Just when I think ACC can not possibly do anything to make me angrier they do. I have written my reps, to the board of ACC, the mayor and anyone else I could get an address for. This needs to CHANGE! The worst part at least to me, is that ACC had the chance to have Nathan Winograd (sp?) as their director and flat out turned him away. Can you imagine the amazing changes we would have seen under his care???

  12. kathy elwood Says:

    The momma cat discussed here, the one that was trying to break out of the box? I just adopted her…and I must say, she is the sweetest, most loving cat I’ve ever met. She curled up with my niece and fell asleep about 30 minutes after she arrived at my house and the whole family is in love. She sleeps next to my head and licks my hair. Her story is so sad, but rest assured, she is very happy and loved in her new home!! :)

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