Andrew Dorman 
Member since Aug 14, 2017


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Re: “Group Calls for Oakland Animal Services to Lower Euthanasia Rate, But Administrators and Allies Say Shelter is Best it’s Been in Years

Im concerned that this article leaves the reader with a false impression about the increase in euthanasia of dogs at OAS. By comparing the overall euthanasia rate of 15% from your Oct 2015 reporting to the 23.8% rate for only dogs in the first half 2017, the reader is left with the impression that euthanasia of dogs has increased dramatically, but this is not completely accurate. It should be clear that it is not proper to compare the overall rate from one period, which includes cats and all other animals, to the dog-only rate for another period.

I also looked at the data, and found that the transfer and adoption rates (43% and 15%) for dogs were essentially unchanged between the first half of 2017 and the same period in 2016. The euthanasia rate for dogs increased less than 2%, from 22.4% to 23.8% between the two periods. Like anyone, I too would prefer to see more animals being saved, but the facts do not support the narrative that there was some dramatic shift to killing more dogs at OAS. Those who wish to see positive changes at the shelter - and this includes myself - must start from an honest understanding of the data.

With transfer, adoption, and euthanasia rates nearly unchanged, the noticeable increase in empty dog kennels at the shelter turns out be due to reduced length of stay and reduced intake, just like director Katz stated. Intake of dogs is down slightly, and as the article reported length of stay has been dramatically reduced due to operational improvements at the shelter. If fewer dogs are coming in, and they are staying for a shorter period of time, it follows that there will be fewer dogs in the shelter population.

Posted by Andrew Dorman on 08/14/2017 at 7:30 PM

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