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Both Ends of the Leash

The animal welfare community and the human welfare community are really doing the same work, just for opposite sides of the leash.  The biases over who should and shouldn't own pets still exist. There's no doubt about that, but the conversation has changed and now more than ever as a movement, we're coming to grips with the fact that pet ownership isn't only for the privileged few.  It begins with those of us in animal welfare as well as the public to recognize that community members are part of the solution. They are the solution as opposed to being the problem.   

For decades efforts to solve issues in animal welfare were really founded in the belief that the public was negligent or ignorant and the solution centered around legislating behavior, instituting punishment  combined with having to educate an uncaring or ignorant public. Those negative attitudes towards the public led animal sheltering to adopt strict rules, policies, catch, and kill tactics for animal control and other policies that really reinforced an us versus them attitude.

Helping Both Ends of the Leash means providing a range of support services such as veterinary telehealth, food banks, stray return-to-owner task forces, behavioral and training services, crisis funds and more. There are so many services that can be provided from a public health and social service component that helps animals as well as people. It bridges the gap between humans and pets, that's what helping both ends of the leash is all about.

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