ACTION ALERT! Please take a few moments to help save shelter pets in Texas

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Texas – Hundreds of thousands of healthy and treatable animals are killed by Texas “shelters”.   At least 80,000 are killed in Houston area shelters alone.   Texas House Bill 2981  aims to help rescuers save more lives while saving the state tax dollars.   HB2981, also called the Tax Saving Pet Adoption, Sterilization, and Transfer Act requires that government run animal shelters collaborate with qualified 501(c)(3) animal rescue groups who are willing to save animals at risk of being killed.

The passing of this Bill into law would mean that kill shelters would no longer be legally allowed to kill an animal that a qualified rescue group has offered to save.*

The average citizen would be appalled to know that “shelters” frequently kill pets that others have offered to save.   But, just about any rescuer, who has worked to pull animals from a kill shelter, can attest to the fact that it does happen, either by accident and many times on purpose.   It is a dirty little “secret” that is happening all over Texas, all of the time.  It has happened to me.   Houston’s city pound i.e. BARC has killed cats that I offered to save.

Appallingly, but not surprisingly, several weeks ago, many of the directors of kill shelters gathered in Austin to oppose this life saving Bill.   They even told legislators that the Bill is not needed because they never turn down rescue groups.  (I suppose that it should not be a shock that some of the opposition of this Bill includes Patti Mercer, director of the Houston SPCA [65% KILL rate], Sherry Ferguson, director of the Houston Humane Society [89% KILL rate], Greg Damianoff, shelter manager of BARC [57% KILL rate] and Joanne Jackson from Citizens for Animal Protection [52% KILL rate].  Revolting, yes.  Shocking, no.)

Best Friends Animal Society and are asking Texas rescuers to talk about their experiences with Texas animal shelters.  Rescuers know what is really going on in shelters, because they there day after day scrambling to save as many as they can.

Below is a link to a short on-line survey that Best Friends and Fix Austin have prepared to collect data from rescue groups regarding their experiences. (Note: They only want data concerning TEXAS shelters since HB2981 will affect only Texas shelters).

If you rescue animals in Texas, please take a moment to answer the survey.  Please do it  RIGHT NOW while you are thinking about it.  It only takes a few minutes to complete and you can remain anonymous, if you wish. 

Click here for the survey

**A hearing on this Bill is expected to be set very soon so your survey responses are needed ASAP.   Legislators need to be aware of what rescuers face while trying to save shelter pets so that they will make the right decisions regarding this important Bill.** 

If Rescuers do not speak up NOW, then the kill shelters may win this battle and could retain their “right” to kill animals that others have offered to save.

If you would like to provide more information than requested in the survey, or if you have any questions, please contact Ryan Clinton at Fix Austin at

*****Please share this survey with other Texas rescue groups.*****

Also, whether you are a rescuer or not, please contact your state representative in and tell him/her that you support HB2981, the Tax Saving Pet Adoption, Sterilization, and Transfer Act.

Click here to go to a site provided by Best Friends that makes it easy to contact your elected representative by typing in your name and address.

Please speak up for shelter pets TODAY.   It only takes a few minutes but it could help save thousands of shelter pets in Texas.


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*HB2981 also gives shelters the right to administer vaccinations on intake to protect shelter pet populations.

It also prohibits shelters from refusing to adopt out dogs or cats based solely on an animal’s breed (i.e. no breed discrimination).  It also and requires rescue groups to spay or neuter adopted pets.    HB 2981 is authored by Texas Representative Eddie Rodriguez.

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