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'Progress has been made': Indiana saved nearly 85,000 pets from animal shelter deaths in 2020

State's save rate reached 83%, but there is still more work to be done.
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Posted at 2:38 PM, Jun 25, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-25 14:38:07-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Out of the 102,311 dogs and cats that entered Indiana's animal shelters, approximately 84,702 of them found homes in 2020. Unfortunately, 8,552 dogs and cats were killed.

"Best Friends Animal Society" released its sixth annual pet lifesaving dataset earlier this week, which gives a national overview of the number of dogs and cats that enter and exit U.S. shelters each year.

Nationally, about 347,000 pets were killed in shelters last year. That's down from 625,000 in 2019, with the largest yearly reduction in dogs and cats killed to date.

Indiana's save rate is at 83% now, and although the state has made progress, the organization says there is more lifesaving that needs to be done.

The national benchmark is 90% to be considered a "no-kill" state. The remaining 10% is in place for the pets who enter shelters with medical or behavioral circumstances that warrant euthanasia — rather than killing for lack of space.

“This was a monumental year for cats and dogs in America’s shelters,” said Julie Castle, CEO of Best Friends Animal Society. “We saw communities, shelters, and individuals step up for animals in ways we couldn’t have imagined, and now we are closer than ever before to achieving our goal of no-kill by 2025.”

About 31% of Indiana shelters are no-kill animal shelters, ranking the state at 12th place on the national list for shelter pet deaths.

Click here to see Indiana's dataset from Best Friends Animal Society.

According to the data collected, cats are killed at twice the rate of dogs even though the intake of dogs is roughly 5% higher.

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