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Press Release

For Immediate Release: April 17, 2012
Contact: ALISON GRASHEIM, agrasheim@alleycat.org or (240) 482-1985; FRANCIE ISRAELI, fisraeli@johnadams.com or (202) 207-1134

ALLEY CAT ALLIES DENOUCES WORCESTER COUNTY, MD ANIMAL CONTROL FOR KILLING PET CATS

BETHESDA, MD— Alley Cat Allies, the only national advocacy organization dedicated to the protection and humane treatment of cats, today condemned Animal Control of Worcester County, Md. after news reports that the agency had trapped and killed pet cats without keeping the cats for the required 10-day holding period or determining whether the cats had owners.

West Ocean City residents reported at least five pet cats that had been trapped and killed by animal control after a “relative newcomer” to the neighborhood called the agency.

“This is outrageous and unacceptable,” said Becky Robinson, president and co-founder of Alley Cat Allies. “According to neighbors, these cats had coexisted in this neighborhood for years, including one who was 16 years old, toothless, and declawed—but animal control killed them anyway. Citizens lost their pets with no opportunity to reclaim them and no apology from animal control.

“This heartbreaking situation is a prime example of a shelter system that is truly broken and not accountable to its constituents,” said Robinson. “Being killed in an animal pound or shelter is the leading documented cause of death for cats in the United States—7 out of every 10 cats taken to shelters are killed there.

“No cat is safe—stray, feral or pet. The biggest threat faced by cats is not any harm that may come to them outdoors, but the animal control and sheltering system,” she said.

Alley Cat Allies is investigating this situation and calling for changes in the shelter’s practices and management. “Clearly, this agency must be held accountable. Our hearts are with the citizens who have lost a beloved family member and are grieving. And we join the neighborhood in their outrage.”

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About Alley Cat Allies
Alley Cat Allies is the only national advocacy organization dedicated to the protection and humane treatment of cats. Founded in 1990, today Alley Cat Allies has more than 260,000 supporters and helps tens of thousands of individuals, communities, and organizations save and improve the lives of millions of cats and kittens nationwide. Their web site is www.alleycat.org.