Why Are Animals Being Turned Away From L.A. Shelters?


3 min read

PETA has a message for Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass: Strays in L.A. are your fault. Countless animals are suffering because her mismanagement allows Los Angeles Animal Services (LAAS) to continue its disastrously failed pursuit of “no-kill” status. L.A. shelter staff have refused to accept stray animals and instructed residents to abandon them on the streets where they found them. PETA and other animal advocates have begged the city to intervene, but despite mounting evidence that LAAS policies aren’t working, Bass and city officials aren’t changing them.

side-by-side collage of two images showing the LA shelter ad

Left: PETA’s ads are going up all over the city. Right: A stray cat at a feeding station half a block from the Chesterfield Square/South LA shelter where animals are reportedly being dumped when turned away by the shelter. Credit: PETA

We’ve plastered the streets near her residence at Getty House, around City Hall, and by the Chesterfield Square/South LA shelter, where animals are reportedly being dumped when they’re turned away by the facility with messages reminding Bass—and her constituents—that countless animals are suffering because of her mismanagement.

How Is Mayor Bass Contributing to L.A.’s Homeless Animal Crisis?

LAAS shelters are severely crowded, and shelter staff are turning away homeless animals, forcing animals to live in filthy cages, warehousing dogs for months without walks, and instructing residents to abandon cats outdoors to fend for themselves, among other atrocities.

Abandoned cats and those who haven’t been socialized to interact with humans endure miserable lives, suffering from thirst, hunger, and exposure to harsh weather before dying due to illness, injury, starvation, human cruelty, or any number of other grisly causes. Cats forced to fend for themselves outdoors typically die before they’re 5 years old. Compare that to cats kept safe inside, who typically live 12 to 20 years.

How You Can Help: Take Action for L.A.’s Homeless Animals

Animal shelters were created to serve as safe havens for animals in need. There should be no waiting lists, no admission fees, and no excuses to keep animals out. The city’s homeless animal population could be humanely and sustainably reduced by enforcing  L.A.’s 2008 spay/neuter ordinance and banning breeding to prevent more animals from being born. Since the ordinance isn’t being enforced, more homeless animals are being born. As a result, the city’s shelters are perpetually full or overflowing, which is why animals are being turned away from shelters and then left on the streets to reproduce. In just one year, an unspayed cat can give birth to 12 kittens and an unspayed dog can have 16 puppies—all of whom would add to the animal overpopulation and homelessness crisis.

Join PETA in calling on Mayor Bass to do her job and remind city shelters of theirs: to provide shelter to all animals in need.

Urge Mayor Bass to Take Action



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