Tip of the Week: Hold ‘Em Close

It’s Monday, and that means it’s time again to share a tool, time-saver, or just-plain-genius idea that your colleagues and members of The Association have suggested and tested.

“There’s an opportunity to really make an impact and decrease length of stay by increasing your Return To Home rates,” share Katherine Shenar and Gina Knepp in their blog, 39 Things Your Shelter Can Do Right Now to Reunite Lost Pets

One way to keep animals from entering your shelter is to partner with your local fire departments, police departments, etc. to establish temporary holding spaces for lost pets. According to ASPCA research, 49% of lost dogs and 30% of lost cats are found within their immediate neighborhood—yet it’s not uncommon for the animal shelter to be a 30- to 45-minute drive away from where the pet is found. “Say a person comes home from work and finds out their pet is missing,” explain Shenar and Knepp. “The shelter is 30 minutes away in traffic, and is closing soon…but if the pet is located at a temporary holding facility, they can pick up their pet sooner.”

Note that at the end of the shift, these temporarily held pets can be transported to the shelter. “But how nice,” says Shenar and Knepp, “if they never entered the sheltering system in the first place!”

For more ways to ramp up your Return to Home efforts, read 39 Things Your Shelter Can Do Right Now to Reunite Lost Pets.

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Photo: Dallas Animal Services


The Association is the only international society of leaders actively leading and managing community animal shelters/animal control agencies.


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