No-kill column: 2013 brings new challenges for Manatee's effort

January 1, 2013 

A new year is upon us, some with goals or resolutions to carry over from last year, and others with new and inspiring resolutions for this New Year. Our main resolution at Animal Services is obvious: to reach our no-kill goal by exceeding and maintaining a 90 percent save rate.

As projects move forward and ideas are implemented, we thank those who have adopted a shelter pet, giving each a second chance to live and love. The goal of becoming a no-kill community is not an easy one, nor has the road to getting where we are now been a smooth one.

We are not a no-kill community yet. We need the continued support of the community with volunteers and foster homes. We still need adopters for our sheltered pets. Even after reaching our no-kill goal, these needs will never cease.

We are fortunate in Manatee County to have a compassionate and caring community. Manatee County is a community that strives to see everything in a positive light. I am proud to be a citizen of Manatee County, where the support for these efforts has been everything I would have expected from this great community. Along with the staff at Animal Services, local rescue and adoption agencies, volunteers and the furry, four-legged members of this county, I am very proud to be a part of such an accomplishment.

Have you ever looked at the Manatee County calendar? If not, this year's calendar is extra special. The Manatee County calendar features a main photo and an inset photo on each month's page highlighting a dog or a cat that was adopted from a shelter or rescue organization. These featured dogs and cats are special in their own individual way, not only in that they were adopted shelter pets, but to the special families who gave them a second chance to live and love.

At the bottom of the page for each month, you will find a brief outline of the programs and services necessary to achieve a successful no-kill plan. This outline will help you understand what becoming a no-kill community is all about and even how you may be able to help.

If you would like a calendar, stop by the Manatee County Administration Building in downtown Bradenton, and while you are there check out the dogs and cats for adoption at our downtown adoption cen

ter, any county library or the Animal Services shelter in Palmetto. This was yet another great opportunity to showcase our plan and show the support of this wonderful county we live in.

If you never have to look into the eyes of a dog or cat and make a choice, you are lucky. One day, we all would like to be lucky too.

Check out Manatee County Animal Services on Facebook. Like us and share us with all your friends. Our web site www.mymanatee.org/pets has a wealth of information, including your new family member for adoption. Or call 941-742-5933 for information.

Kris Weiskopf, chief of Manatee County Animal Services, writes this weekly column for the Bradenton Herald.

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