Being an open door shelter, the Central Missouri Humane Society will never turn away an animal being relinquished or turned over into our care. Unfortunately this policy means that CMHS will, at some point, take in animals that either cannot be adopted or take in too many animals for the limited amount of cage space available in the shelter. CMHS is constantly working on developing new programs, pursuing new opportunities, and gathering more resources to decrease the number of animals euthanized and increase the amount of animals successfully released from the shelter to qualified adopters or certified rescues. Listed below are the reasons for euthanasia at CMHS.
Owner Request- Reasons for Euthanasia
Owner request is a low-cost service provided to the public for humane euthanasia.
Some Health Reasons for Euthanasia- Veterinarian Recommended
Being diagnosed with some of the sicknesses or diseases listed below does not necessarily dictate that the animal will be euthanized. Mild to moderate cases of many of these will be treated or sent to rescue. These diseases and illnesses are categorized as sickness/disease or medical based on options available through the electronic shelter database.
Chronic Renal Failure
Feline Leukemia (FELV)
Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV)
Feline Infections Peritonitis (FIP)
Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disease (FLUTD)
Feline Medication Resistant Upper Respiratory Infections
Advanced Feline Conjunctivitis
Feline Calici Virus
Canine Medication Resistant Infectious Tracheobronchitis
Injured, Physically Impaired or Disabled
Generalized Ringworm (zoonotic)*
* Zoonotic- simply means transferrable between species. As such, these illnesses are a public health concern, not only for potential adopters, but our staff since people are highly susceptible.
** Treatment options are often provided for heartworm positive dogs if rescue attempts fail. Current practice is to only euthanize those heartworm positive dogs that suffer from a very advanced case of heartworm infection.
In the past it has always been the policy of CMHS not to adopt out, but to attempt to place bully breeds (such as Pit Bulls) into rescue. Unfortunately many of the rescues were filled to capacity, causing CMHS to euthanize these animals. As of November 2011, CMHS has instituted its Bull Runs Program, adopting out eligible bully breeds. These animals are place into a specialized program, which has a more intense behavioral evaluation. If animals are still labeled as euthanized due to “breed” it is to show that they failed this evaluation. This is done to show this program is still exclusive to animals that will be a true breed ambassador once released into the public. All other bully breed reasons for euthanasia (such as health or space) will be labeled as such.
When animals are brought to the shelter with extreme behavior issues sometimes they can be deemed less adoptable. Examples of this include; repeated house soiling, severe separation anxiety, or severe unsocial behavior. These animals are always the first candidates to be sent to rescue. However, when space becomes an issue, the lesser adoptable animals can be pulled from the shelter due to these issues.
When we have exhausted all options for the animals (foster care, rescue, adoption) unfortunately management has the difficult decision to euthanize animals for space reasons. These are healthy, adoptable animals with no known behavior or health issues.
Aggression is marked when there are threatening behaviors shown towards either humans or other animals in the shelter. This may also be used in bite cases or for owned dogs/cats relinquished for a repeated history of aggression. This may also apply to fear biting, unprovoked attack, or threatening behaviors.
Feral may be applied to dogs or cats however, are more commonly associated with cats. The shelter is unable to either rehabilitate or adopt out feral animals due to limited resources and space. Due to public health concerns and lack of resources for a comprehensive TNR program, feral cats are euthanized. Most feral animals are brought in as owner request euthanasia, with consent of said owner.
Failure to thrive pertains to young animals that do not respond to appropriate treatment, medication, or any other specialized care. Geriatric is listed when the animal is in failing health due to age.
With more resources, we would be able to incorporate programs to counteract some of these categories.
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Click here for Euthanasia Data
Click here for Intake Analysis
Click here for Outcome Analysis