Austin Pets Alive! | Letter from Dr. Jefferson: Along with YOU

Dec 24, 2021

Expensive Buddies,

As this yr involves an in depth, I’m in awe of the lifesaving love that you’ve for canine and cats who don’t have any different probabilities to outlive. You made positive that pets survived a winter storm. You made positive that Austin remained the most secure metropolis within the US for pets for the tenth yr in a row. You bought APA! one step nearer to maintaining shelter pets within the coronary heart of Austin. Most significantly, this yr, you made positive that greater than 12,000 pets had been saved from pointless loss of life in shelters.

This yr additionally marked an enormous shift, on account of COVID, in the way in which that authorities shelters function everywhere in the nation. For the primary time in historical past, governments are banding collectively to handle the foundation causes of crowded shelters and pointless euthanasia. Though we aren’t a authorities shelter, APA! helps to steer the motion in the direction of a extra humane, for people and pets, approach of working. The reward all animal lovers have wished for yr after yr lastly feels possible- to get rid of the killing of shelter pets in America, ceaselessly.

Early in 2022, APA! management will likely be sharing our full 2021 affect numbers and highlights, however as you have a good time the vacations (when you have a good time them, and nonetheless you safely can this yr) we wish to want you and your family members properly and thanks in your continued function in saving animal lives.

Let’s have a look again on just some of the milestones from 2021.

February: Winter Storm Uri & the beginning of transport

When Winter Storm Uri hit Texas in mid-February this yr, it leftover 4 million folks out of energy and water for days. Temperatures bought right down to traditionally low single digits, and there was widespread lack of web and mobile phone reception.

In our work, lives are on the road each day. When disasters like Uri hit, it takes a village to make sure no companions’ lives are misplaced — regardless of the circumstances. Our devoted employees and volunteers went above and past to maintain the animals on-site secure and heat, with some employees even sleeping on the shelter.

With the assistance of the neighborhood, we had been in a position to triage burst pipes and regain energy by way of donated mills. We relied on our neighborhood greater than ever throughout this time, and our neighborhood relied on us. Our P.A.S.S. (Optimistic Alternate options to Shelter Give up) program was in full power, saving neighborhood pets from the chilly, offering meals and water to pet house owners in want and a lot extra.

As we gained management over our personal disaster, the main focus turned to animals who had been dropping their lives in shelters that didn’t have energy as we madly transported greater than 1,000 of them to different cities that would assist. Whereas Austin is the most secure place for pets within the US, solely a tiny fraction of the 150,000 animals dropping their lives every year in Texas can get into Austin. The chilly disaster bought us to think about Austin as a pit cease within the journey from one very harmful place in TX to a a lot much less harmful place within the north, even when that remaining vacation spot shouldn’t be at Austin’s stage of No Kill success. In doing so, we began to open the door to creating Texas No Kill. As of right now, 2,228 lives have been saved in 2021 due to your assist of the transport efforts in Texas.

April: Launched partnership with Austin FC

The primary-of-its-kind honorary mascot partnership featured APA! canine accessible for adoption as Austin FC honorary mascots at every Austin FC regular-season residence match all through the 2021 season. The perfect factor about this partnership is that the main focus was on canine who usually are seemed over within the shelter as a result of they’re too massive or too previous. For the reason that launch of the community-centered partnership, 15 Austin FC mascots have been adopted!

September: Austin tenth No Kill Anniversary

2021 marked Austin’s tenth yr as a No Kill metropolis. When APA! was based in 1997 as an all-volunteer advocacy group, Austin Animal Middle’s save price was 15 p.c. In June 2008, APA! was reborn as a rescue group and by 2011, town reached a 90 p.c reside launch price, making Austin the most important No Kill metropolis within the U.S.

Ten years later, our metropolis now has a 97 p.c reside launch price. Along with you, the very best values of the folks of Austin are represented in the way in which we look after our neighborhood’s pets.

October: Shelter Re-opening

By late October, after over a yr of adopting APA pets completely on-line, we determined it was time to re-open our doorways — safely. With masking and different security measures in place, our shelter is now open Saturday and Sunday from midday to six p.m. Seeing our neighborhood members in particular person in any case this time has been one of many highlights of the yr.

November: Metropolis Decision Passes

We pulled off one other season of profitable lifesaving regardless of the challenges with our City Lake facility and restrictions inside our settlement with town. This November although, we achieved a serious milestone in working in the direction of a years-long overdue resolution. Our settlement, because it had not been up to date in over 10 years, didn’t enable us to satisfy our group’s mission. We had been restricted by the areas through which we might assist surrounding shelters whereas maintaining Austin No Kill. And we had been restricted to an arbitrary variety of animals that we should pull from Austin Animal Middle, which has the most important municipal funds within the nation, even when it meant we had been duplicating their work.

With out a new settlement, our residence within the coronary heart of town and our daring imaginative and prescient for the way forward for animal welfare was in jeopardy. On November 4th, Metropolis Council voted to permit us to absorb animals from wherever and stay at residence in our present location. We nonetheless should finalize an official lease settlement, which ought to replicate the worth of the land use when it comes to donated {dollars} we spend to undertake out animals of their cost. However we’re thrilled that one of many two main roadblocks to a profitable authorized partnership is now out of the way in which. It might NOT have occurred with out you elevating your voice and telling the council that saving our four-legged, and typically three-legged, relations’ lives, responsibly, issues to you.

At the moment

We’re pleased with the progress we’ve made on our new strategic plan we introduced final yr. We’ve accomplished and are implementing quite a lot of applications to be a sustainable group and to spend money on our folks. We’ve additionally opened our Human Animal Assist Providers (HASS) challenge so any group could be a accomplice and, in doing so, exponentially grown the work underway to vary the way in which authorities shelters operate- by shifting the main focus from simply animals to families- each human and nonhuman. At the moment we now have 104 HASS accomplice organizations. Right here at residence in Austin, we’re persevering with to seek out higher methods to save lots of the lives that we encounter in want, it doesn’t matter what problem or trauma they’ve to beat.

As we are saying goodbye to 2021 and hi there to 2022, we’re nearing 100,000 intakes of animals since 2008. That’s almost 100,000 that will’ve been killed for habits quirks, medical points and even only a lack of area at partnering shelters. Along with you, APA! continues to be the security internet for pets who’ve nowhere else to show.

In 2021, we by no means might have anticipated the assist that you simply gave to animals and we’re so grateful for YOU. Nonetheless, we’re nonetheless wanting our December purpose for donations to assist the work we have to kick off on January 1, 2022. In case you are nonetheless able to assist financially this yr, please click on right here to make a present as a result of, due to beneficiant nameless donors, it will likely be doubled as much as $100,000 by means of December thirty first. Each bit helps exponentially if given earlier than the yr ends.

Thanks for all the pieces you do for the pets that want you most. Completely satisfied holidays and comfortable new yr!

-Ellen Jefferson, DVM

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