Shelter killing is the leading cause of death for healthy dogs and cats in the United States. Today, an animal entering a shelter has only one chance in two of making it out alive, and in some places it is as low as one in ten, with shelters blaming a lack of available homes as the cause of death. And yet, statistics reveal that there are over seven times as many people looking to bring an animal into their home every year as there are animals being killed in shelters because they lack one. Almost half of all animals who enter our nation’s shelters go out the back door in garbage bags rather than out the front door in the loving arms of adopters despite the fact that there are plenty of homes available. And when animal lovers question the excuses used to justify this killing, shelters and their national allies respond, “We are all on the same side,” “We all want the same thing,” “We are all animal lovers” and insist that criticism of shelters and staff is unfair and callous because “No one wants to kill.” The facts, however, tragically and frequently tell a very different story. How can you fix a problem you refuse to admit exists? How can shelters reform their practices when they refuse to have standards and benchmarks that would hold them accountable to the best performing shelters in the nation? They can’t. They don’t. And they won’t. So you will have to do it for them. These guides will show you how.


How Does Your Community’s Shelter Measure Up?


No Kill 101

Dollars & Sense


We Can Do It!

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The Myth of Pet Overpopulation


What’s In a Name?


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The No Kill Revolution Starts With You


 Countering the Opposition

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There Ought to Be a Shelter Reform Law

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Section 1983 to the Rescue

DIY Guide

How To Be a Superhero for Shelter Animals*

*Coming Soon! Click here to receive it by email as soon as it becomes available (be sure to click the box “No Kill Advocates”)


Companion Animal Protection Act

Animal Rescue Act

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Ban the Gas Chamber

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Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act

Please note: These guides are high resolution PDFs which are print-ready; meaning you can send them to FedEx Office, or your local printer to professionally print them as 8.5 x 11 inch saddle-stitched booklets and share them with your local officials. You are also free to print them on paper, e-mail, or repost them.


No Kill is a humane, sustainable, cost-effective model that works hand in hand with public health and safety, while fulfilling a fiscal responsibility to taxpayers. The animals deserve it. And so do the people who love them: people like you. Prepare, educate, fight, win. For additional resources, click here.

You can get a CD with the documents in the Toolkit, the resource library on the “Learn” page, and other “How To” manuals, sample adoption promotions, information guides, and more, as well as our documentary on the No Kill movement, a signed copy of Redemption, the award-winning book about animals, and of Irreconcilable Differences: The Battle for the Heart & Soul of America’s Animal Shelters, in our Reforming Animal Control/Building a No Kill Community Packet. It is an indispensable guide for those working to end the killing in their communities. The cost is $70.

To purchase, click here. (U.S. addresses only.)