Vigil held to raise awareness of preventing pet euthanasia

ASAP wants residents to raise efforts to spay, neuter cats, dogs

SAN ANTONIO – A vigil for dogs and cats was held in front of the Alamo on Saturday night to raise awareness about preventing pet euthanasia.

The group, Advocates for San Antonio Pets, organized the event in hopes that residents will be more aggressive in efforts to spay and neuter cats and dogs.

"This is about no-kill starting in the home. It is the community's responsibility," ASAP founder DeAnna Lee said.

She said if more pets are spayed and neutered, it would provide much-needed relief to overwhelmed animal shelters, such as Animal Care Services. Fostering and adopting pets also help.

"ACS is overwhelmed," Lee said. "They pulled in 600 dogs over the Memorial Day Weekend."

Lee said ACS announced earlier this year that it had met its goal of no-kill status, but the city shelter has since lost the status because it couldn't keep at least 90 percent of the animals from being euthanized.

"When I go to the shelter, sometimes there's a line of people waiting for the door to open to drop their dog off," Lee said. "And they don't know that the dog might not make it. I mean, what are they going to do? They have more dogs than they can deal with."

Lee said the vigil wasn't aimed at criticizing ACS but rather an opportunity to spread the message about residents helping to put an end to animal euthanasia.

"ACS is the end of a long journey that started in a family's home when they did not spay and neuter, when they allowed their pets to run around in the neighborhoods freely," Lee said.

ACS officials weren't available for comment.

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