ASPCA® Mission: Orange™ Report Highlights Achievements in Philadelphia

NEW YORK - A report published by the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) highlights statistics that outline progress of the ASPCA® Mission: Orange™ partnership in Philadelphia, one of six target communities nationwide participating in the campaign - a focused effort to provide positive outcomes for at - risk pets (i.e., shelter animals).

The ASPCA's Philadelphia Biannual Report (January-June 2008), details accomplishments and summarizes data provided by Philadelphia's animal welfare partners. Among the highlights are increases in Live Release Rate*, adoptions, spay/neuter, lost animal returns to owner, and a decrease in euthanasia.

"The ASPCA's support of animal welfare organizations in Philadelphia is long-standing and goes beyond any previous community-wide efforts to help end the needless euthanasia of companion animals," said ASPCA President and CEO Ed Sayres. "The ASPCA Mission: Orange effort has helped drive the effort to raise the live release rate for Philadelphia's unwanted animals, and we're happy to have played a role in this progress."

Since 2006, the ASPCA has partnered with the Philadelphia Department of Health, Philadelphia Animal Care & Control (PACCA), Pennsylvania SPCA, and other Philadelphia animal welfare organizations, and has made significant progress. Over the last three years, the live release rate* has increased 6.2 percent (from 43.84 to 50.26 percent), and euthanasia has decreased by nine percent (from 47.2 to 38.2 percent). Groups submitting data include PACCA, PSPCA, The Spayed Club, Philadelphia Community Cats Council, Hope Animal Resource Center and Forgotten Cats.

The most recent comparisons - from January to June 2008 - compared to the same period in 2007, are as follows, even with an increase of four percent in the number of animals entering the system(intake):

  • Live Release Rate rose by 2.5 percent (50.3 v. 47.8 percent), or 638 more cats and dogs (7,685 v. 7,047);
  • Adoptions increased by 11 percent, or 556 cats and dogs (5,745 v. 5,189);
  • Targeted spay/neuter increased by 38 percent, or 1,153 cats and dogs (4,168 v. 3,015);
  • Returns to owner increased by four percent; and
  • Euthanasia decreased by five percent;
  • The ASPCA has invested nearly one million dollars in capacity-building and related animal welfare efforts in the form of human and financial resources, advice, and education and over the last three years. This includes a $150,000 commitment to the University of Pennsylvania to support a surgery position in the Shelter Animal Medicine Program at the School of Veterinary Medicine. This surgeon, along with his students, participates in sterilization and care of animals at PACCA's shelter on a weekly basis.

    In 2008, the ASPCA also provided financial support to The Spayed Club for 1,000 spay/neuter surgeries, the Philadelphia Community Cat Council for needed TNR (trap/neuter/return) supplies and equipment, and Animal Alliance of Belle Meade, a recognized PACCA partner. On June 1, the ASPCA launched its Philadelphia Rescue Assistance Program ("Philly RAP") to assist animal control rescue partners with animal transfers into their adoption programs. Philly Rap provides up to $70,000 in both subsidy and medical reimbursement services to homeless pets transferred from the Philadelphia Animal Care and Control Association (PACCA) to its recognized rescue partners.

    Other financial resources offered by the ASPCA include assistance to PACCA for life-saving efforts for its animals, and to PSPCA for medical supplies, forensic expertise and staffing resources for a large scale cruelty investigation, and sponsorship for the Good Dog Gala.

    "The ASPCA encourages Philadelphia's animal welfare agencies to work collaboratively toward a successfully functioning, sustainable model for creating positive outcomes for homeless animals," said Sayres. "We've made significant progress with APSCA Mission: Orange, but it doesn't happen overnight. It takes time to get sustainable results."

    *Live release rate refers to the percentage of animals that leave the sheltering system alive through adoption, return to owner, or transfer outside of the partner organizations. The formula for calculating LRR is total number of live releases divided by intake. By contrast, the term "save rate" often includes any animal that has not been euthanized, such as those whose outcome is not yet known/those still in sheltering system. For this reason, the calculation for live release rate will usually show a different percentage than save rate.

    Read our previous announcements.

    Click here to learn more about ASPCA's Mission: Orange.

    Click here to learn about upcoming Hope spay/neuter clinics.