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Redemption: The Myth of Pet Overpopulation and the No Kill Revolution in America

Redemption: The Myth of Pet Overpopulation and the No Kill Revolution in America

4.5 10
by Nathan J. Winograd

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Redemption is the story of animal sheltering in the United States, a movement that was born of compassion and then lost its way. It is the story of the 'No Kill' movement, which says we can and must stop the killing. But most of all, it is a story about believing in the community and trusting in the power of compassion.


Redemption is the story of animal sheltering in the United States, a movement that was born of compassion and then lost its way. It is the story of the 'No Kill' movement, which says we can and must stop the killing. But most of all, it is a story about believing in the community and trusting in the power of compassion.

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Almaden Books
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6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

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Redemption: The Myth of Pet Overpopulation and the No Kill Revolution in America 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
ArleenKrippene More than 1 year ago
A must read for anyone who cares about animals. Redemption chronicles how a humane movement founded by the ASPCA in the 1880's lost its way, turning from rescue to "killing is kindness" strategy, setting precedent for other animal humane and animal control shelters nationwide. The author blames this anomaly on bureaucratic policies arising as once humane agencies grew to represent millions of members and millions of dollars in assets. Twice as many people are looking for a new dog, he claims, than the number of dogs entering shelters and more are looking for a new cat than those entering shelters. two thirds of stray dogs could be reunited with their families.and rescue groups are available to keep adoptable animals from being killed. He criticizes the temperament test used to justify killing dogs because in supposedly screening out aggressive dogs, it does not assure that friendly, scared, shy, sick, or injured dogs are not wrongly executed. He deplores the media-inspired crusade against specific breeds, especially pit bulls. Even aggressive dogs, he says, could "lead happy lives in sanctuaries where they cannot harm the public." Redemption will come using the formulas he outlines for redressing this untenable situation. Some are already in place at the more enlightened shelters. Anyone reading this book will never again accept the falsehood that there are more animals than prospective homes. Hopefully, when there are enough of us, change will come, ensuring hope and life to all animals. Arleen Krippene St. Francis Sanctuary for Animals <sanctuary@m99ailstation.com>
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
elektrah More than 1 year ago
Redemption is not an easy book, but it¿s an crucial one. It¿s full of info, and for those who love animals, it¿s important info. At this moment in time, with legislation concerning the number of pets we own & breed increasing daily, understanding what motivates the opposition in this complex issue is one of the keys to beating them. But be prepared for some pain along the way¿some in the form of statistics, but most in the realization of how many animals could have been saved, if shelters changed the way they were doing things. Most of the book is an indepth explanation of the following quote: ¿In the final analysis, animals in shelters are not being killed because there are too many of them, because there are too few homes, or because the public is irresponsible. Animals in shelters are dying for primarily one reason¿because people in shelters are killing them.¿ Redemption is divided into several sections¿beginning with a history of animal sheltering in the US. It chronicles the movement as a whole, showing how it slowly went wrong and somehow began to focus on killing animals rather than saving them, finally ending up where we are now. It explains how the blame was shifted from animal control agencies to the public and the animals themselves, through initiatives like ¿LES¿¿Legislation, Education, and Sterilization. Shelters weren¿t taking the next step, however, and providing low cost spay/neuter options, nor were they trying to reduce shelter deaths. They were too busy pointing fingers. It details the first success story in American sheltering¿when Richard Avanzino took over the SF SPCA and began implementing programs aimed at saving lives rather than just abiding by the status quo. Policy changes during his tenure would eventually lead to no healthy animals being killed in San Francisco, and greatly reduce overall shelter deaths. And it¿s the story of a man, Nathan Winograd, who saw the success of No Kill in San Francisco, and took the lessons learned there to upstate New York, where as Director of the TC SPCA he built on the success of SF to create the first No Kill community in America. Later, he would move on to found the No Kill Advocacy Center, with a goal of creating a No Kill nation. It lists the steps needed to achieve No Kill, and where and how it worked¿in urban American, in rural America, in the South, etc. and how various programs can lead the way there. It tells you what you can do to help. There are a lot of amazing ideas put forth in this book, & I urge anyone who loves animals to read it. There are several key concepts that Nathan goes back to again and again. One is that No Kill is achievable if the people involved believe in it & work with a goal of saving lives. Another is that the building blocks of No Kill are simple, and that each piece helps: volunteering at the shelter, feral cat trap-neuter-return, spay/neuter before adoption, fostering, breed rescue, etc. These building blocks are things that individuals can contribute to, each according to their abilities, resources, time, etc. This is a very personal book for me, for a number of reasons. I lived in Tompkins County until a few years ago, and was very aware of the issues facing the SPCA, and the problems they had with funding. I met Nathan when he first became Director at the SPCA, and had a front-row seat as many of the events described in the book happened. I make no claim to being impartial about this¿my copy of Redemption is
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
KtDearest More than 1 year ago
I had to read this book when I saw the title, The Myth of Pet Overpopulation. The author writes "If a community is still killing the majority of shelter animals, it is because the local SPCA, humane society, or animal control shelter has fundamentally failed in its mission," he writes. "And this failure is nothing more than a failure of leadership. The buck stops with the shelter's director." And I agree that many times, the shelters do fail to institute effective fostering programs and affordable spay & neuter programs. But right now the shelters are inundated with dogs who have been abandoned by their owners. Owners that may have had no other options perhaps due to foreclosure and owners who have simply given up on their pets. And there are NOT enough homes for these pets. It is very easy to put the responsibility on the SPCA and humane society. It is a problem that belongs to all of us.and that does include the pet owners. And he was a bit to generous with San Francisco. The ACC & SPCA and the whole no-kill thing. If it were not for local shelters, there would be many many San Francisco animals euthanized. The SPCA is quick to reject dogs as unadoptable for behavioral and medical conditions. It is as if the author simply took what he was told as gospel. He should have gone to the shelter to see what the SF SPCA has rejected. Plenty of good dogs.
DogloverDC More than 1 year ago
This book was an eye-opener about the organizations who are suppose to take care of animals in the shelters, instead they find it easier to euthanize them. Animal shelters are about finding homes for these poor animals in "jail". Everybody should read this book if they are a true animal lover.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
Redemption has become one of the most highly acclaimed books on animal sheltering ever written. It has now picked up another honor: Silver Medal for the Best Book (Animals/Pets) of 2008 by the Independent Publishers Association. Redemption was also a Best Book nominee by the Dog Writers Association of America and picked up the following endorsements: 'Redemption is a passionate advocacy for ending the killing of homeless dogs and cats in shelters. Telling the story of how the movement of animal sheltering in the United States was born of compassion and lost its way... Redemption offers hope that America can yet change its ways. Highly recommended. ¿ Midwest Book Reviews '[T]he most provocative and best-informed overview of animal sheltering ever written.' ¿ Animal People. 'An important work... The world owes much to those rare individuals who see things differently - and who then devote themselves to vindicating their maverick conclusions.' ¿ The Bark '[An] excellent, empowering new book.' ¿ Fetchdog.com. 'One of the most important books you¿ll read this year.'¿ Pajiba.com. It has also been favorably reviewed in the San Francisco Chronicle, Sacramento Bee, and other newspapers. But that doesn't tell the whole story. Endorsements have also come from dog lovers, cat lovers, rabbit lovers, and others who have bought copies of the book to give to their local shelter directors, city council members, and others or have blogged about it in order to help spread the word that we can create a brighter future for animals--a future where every animal will be respected and cherished, and where every individual life will be protected and revered. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Nathan Winograd¿s Redemption is one of the most important books about animal welfare to appear in the last decade. In 2001, Winograd became Director of the SPCA in Ithaca, New York, and transformed the county animal shelter that functioned as a death camp into a state of the art shelter that saved 93% of the animals entering the facility. Through ingenuity, leadership and unflagging dedication he was able to marshal the good will, love and compassion of the community in Tompkins County to participate in this new adventure to save lives. Redemption tells the story of this transformation and documents the intractable resistance of the municipal shelter industry to implementing simple programs to save lives. In the past couple decades there have been major changes in the public¿s feelings and understanding of companion animals. As Winograd points out they have moved from the backyard into our homes, onto our beds. Untold numbers of people perished in the wake of hurricane Katrina because guardians refused to abandon their companion animals. This change in attitude had not gone unnoticed. In 1997, the London Times Literary Supplement noted a major paradigm shift among scientists and intellectuals in attitudes about dogs, from the behaviorist perspective which saw them as simply instinctive animals, to the modern view which realizes they are highly complicated, conscious, caring animals. Thanks Nathan, the nation shares your vision.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Winograd is passionate, articulate and astute as he describes the total failure of our country's humane agencies to protect animals. However, 'Redemption: The Myth of Pet Overpopulation and the No Kill Revolution in America' is so much more than a tell-all critique from someone who has worked inside the 'humane' industry. It is also a road map to a new, more humane world. At once gripping and infuriating, 'Redemption' takes the reader on a real life roller coaster ride as it traces the history of the animal welfare movement in America - a movement that was born of compassion, and then lost its way. Why do our country's wealthiest animal shelters continue to amass millions of dollars in reserves, while -at the same time - failing to implement programs that are proven to end the unnecessary killing of pets in their very own shelters? You will need to read this book to find out. Warning: you will not be able to put it down once you start reading.