There have been a lot of changes happening at Dallas Animal Services (DAS) over the past six months and it’s obvious that the staff and our fellow rescue partners are working their tails off to improve and save more lives. I think it’s important that we start addressing some shifts in our culture so we can meet the needs of DAS right now. DAS is not the same DAS it was a year ago. A pride point for me has always been our flexibility, and this is a time where we are going to need to shift our thinking and approach a bit from years past. For example:
- Focusing less on End of Days (EOD). We are moving to a quicker approach to rescue. Celebrating how little time an animal has to sit at the shelter because we are not waiting for EODs any longer. I want to encourage our fosters to tag quickly, preventing exposure to disease and decline in the shelter. Just think, if we didn’t rely on an EOD to tag, maybe they would not be needed anymore!
- Focusing less on what we did last year and more on what we can do now. Rescue numbers are going to trickle down because DAS is able to adopt out more animals. They need us to meet gaps: fostering larger dogs, bottle babies, and the very medically needy. Our quantity will go down, but the quality will continue to rise because we are saving those that need us most!
- DAS is consistently at a low 80% save rate which is amazing considering their intake is up when compared to last year. Getting to 90% will be hard, it will require us to take on the animals that DAS can’t, which is our mission. I also want to encourage us to shift our thinking from pure foster to adoption, to transport opportunities, PASS, TNR, and other ways we can help save lives.
At the end of the day, we are witnessing a turnaround for our shelter partner and for the City of Dallas, which is what we set out to do in 2012. DAS is accomplishing things we only could dream of years ago and we are celebrating their successes. I want to thank you for your unwavering support and flexibility as always, we could not do this without each of you. I know I am ready to continue fighting for those that need us most! I hope you are too!