Confirmed victory

Save The Ukiah Animal Shelter!

This petition made change with 2,827 supporters!

We have created this petition to KEEP Mendocino County Animal Care Services (in Ukiah, CA) as a unit of Mendocino County Health and Human Services Agency and NOT integrated under law enforcement

The Ukiah Shelter is currently being managed by the Health and Human Services Agency and that is where it should remain to ensure lives will continue to be saved. As a result of what has happened in other places where law enforcement has taken control of shelters, it is apparent that the Ukiah Animal Shelter should not be placed under the Sheriff's Office.*(see footnote #1) It is already known that law enforcement agencies have limited resources and employees, and should be focusing on reducing crime and protecting its community, its citizens. That is law enforcement’s mission. Therefore, this potential turnover is not in the best interest of our community's safety as law enforcement will be compromised. Our fear is that there will be an increase of euthanized cats and dogs, they may eliminate the excellent staff and give pets a limited amount of time to find homes. Also, our fear is that the community will not have as much say or input if law enforcement takes over the shelter. We cannot let this happen.

If the shelter is turned over to law enforcement it will lose Pit Crew and its most dedicated volunteers.*(see footnote #2) The majority of the community owns Pitbulls and Pit Crew has done amazing things for the community by promoting responsible pet ownership, which is a huge part of the shelter’s core mission. It would be a great loss. These passionate volunteers, who would leave if this turnover occurs, have assisted in generating some of the shelter’s donations or contributed monetary funds themselves which has helped with medical costs of the animals, pet enrichment, as well as helped these pets get rescued or adopted. These volunteers have a wealth of connections made up of animal rescue organizations, animal shelter supporters and animal lovers across the country. These connections are greatly needed in order for the Ukiah Animal Shelter to continue their path of high adoption rates and low euthanasia rates. 

The Ukiah Shelter is not perfect, but it has made huge improvements. It has turned into a great county run shelter! in 2003, approximately 60% of the animals were being euthanized and now that number has dropped significantly to under 20%. The shelter does not euthanize for space and animals are not given time limits. Even animals with medical issues are often saved. All pets deemed adoptable are adopted out unless it becomes inhumane to keep them any longer, for example if an animal is going kennel crazy or is in physical pain. However, even then the Ukiah Shelter will reach out to rescue organizations. It is a place where animals have a VERY good chance at finding their “furever” homes. 

Major accomplishments of Animal Care Services reported under “Budget Impacts” in the 2013-2014 Grand Jury report:

-12,616 dogs licensed
-798 animal adoptions
-500 animals returned to owners
-798 animals transferred to non-profit rescue organizations
-2067 spay/neuter surgeries

What the report failed to mention was that these accomplishments were achieved by an excellent staff and an amazing group of volunteers who are dedicated in caring for as well as placing animals into loving homes. These staff members have been there for years and do not deserve the possibility of being fired if law enforcement were to restructure. There are volunteers who have been there just as long and cannot work with law enforcement if they may raise euthanasia rates, eliminate staff or give pets limited time in finding homes. Without these volunteers, there would be no shelter website, Petfinder page, Instagram page, Facebook page or craigslist posts all of which bring attention to the adoptable pets and play a large role in getting pets adopted. Volunteers, staff, and nonvolunteers, all members of this great community, have worked harmoniously together to make a significant impact in the lives of these innocent shelter pets under the management of Health and Human Services Agency. So, WHY restructure? Each year euthanasia rates stay low and adoptions and rescues numbers stay high! There is no need to restructure! If positive things are happening, WE SHOULD NOT HAVE TO GO BACKWARDS. Keep the shelter under the Mendocino County Health and Human Services Agency!

Why would law enforcement want to take on an animal organization when it is already limited in resources and employees and needs to focus on its mission of protecting the citizens of our community???

Please help us by signing the petition in support of keeping the Ukiah Animal Shelter how it is currently being run. We have to step up and become the voice of the animals so innocent lives will not be lost. Please help us stop this reccomended turnover by signing and spreading the word. We need lots of support, but I know together we can keep the Ukiah Animal Shelter under Health and Human Services Agency continuing the great work its done for the community as well as the animals who enter the shelter!

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - WAYS TO HELP - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 

1) Sign the petition :)

2) Send this petition to your family and friends. Also, share this petition on social media - twitter, facebook, and instagram!

3) Join us on Facebook too:

4) Send emails to the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors and Mendocino County Human and Health Services Agency by letting them know you do not support this recommended turnover and want to keep the Ukiah Shelter as a unit under Health and Human Services Agency...



5) Write a letter to the editor in the Ukiah Daily Journal...

6) Help us research about other shelters that have either had or are currently facing problems when law enforcement took over the animal shelter! 


- - - - - - - - - - - - - - WONDERING WHY THIS IS AN ISSUE? - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 

The 2013-2014 Grand Jury report released found rather negative findings, which you can read here:

However, the Mendocino County Board of Supervisors response disagreed wholly with the majority of the findings and partially with a few, which you can read here:

Upon reading these responses, it is evident that the shelter does not need to be moved to law enforcement and should be kept under the Health and Human Services Agency as they are doing an excellent job in managing the shelter. The initial 2013-2014 Grand Jury report stated major accomplishments, which may not continue if the shelter were to be turned over to law enforcement. Therefore, this recommended turnover is not warranted.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - FOOTNOTES - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 

#1: The Oakland Animal Services has already experienced the effects that would happen if law enforcement were to take over and thankfully it no longer falls under that department anymore for the Oakland Shelter. You can read more about that here: and here:

The Berkeley shelter also moved from underneath law enforcement as shown here: 

#2: It has been confirmed that Pit Crew, by the lead trainer, will not operate under law enforcement. Numerous volunteers have also stated the same thing that they will not support the shelter if law enforcement takes over and does what we fear that they will do with raising euthanasia rates, eliminating staff and giving pets limited time in finding homes. To the volunteers it would be supporting and rewarding their actions, which they cannot do as it is against their philosophies and their core mission of saving the lives of the shelter animals.

Today: Paws to Adopt is counting on you

Paws to Adopt needs your help with “Mendocino County Board of Supervisors: Save The Ukiah Animal Shelter!”. Join Paws to Adopt and 2,826 supporters today.