Lanark Animal Welfare Society

Our mission is to promote the welfare of all animals, to provide shelter and care, and prevent cruelty and suffering for those animals in need.

What is No-Kill?


FALL 2012 NEWSLETTER – September 24th 2012
Nicole Lapratte-Patry

L.A.W.S: A “No Kill” Shelter

As we, the shelter staff, the volunteers, the Board Members and the community, strive to keep the Lanark Animal Welfare Society well and alive as a sustainable organization, I feel that now is the time, more than ever, to give clear explanation of who we are as a very important service to the community and as a “No Kill” shelter.

The first step to a No Kill Shelter is to make the decision and the commitment to reject the kill-oriented ways of the past. The next step involves putting in place the infrastructure to save lives.

Following a commitment to a No Kill Shelter is the need for accountability. Accountability means having clear definitions, a lifesaving plan, and protocols and procedure oriented toward preserving life. The decision to end an animal’s life is a serious one, and should always be treated as such. Each and every animal is an individual, and each deserves individual consideration.

As well, in order to meet the challenge that a No Kill entails, shelter leadership needs to get the community excited, to energize people for the task at hand. By working with the animal loving public, implementing lifesaving programs, and treating each life as precious, a shelter can transform and become an integral part of the community.

The No Kill Shelter Programs and Services Include:

1. TNR Program (Trap/Neuter/Release Feral Cat Program)​
2. High-Volume, Low-Cost Spay/Neuter
3. Rescue Groups
4. Foster Care (caring for sick and injured or behaviorally challenged animals)
5. Comprehensive Adoption Programs
6. Pet Retention (develop innovative strategies for keeping people and their companion animals together)
7. Medical and Behavior Prevention & Rehabilitation
8. Public Relations/Community Involvement
9. Volunteers
10. Proactive Redemptions (Proactive approach to returning animals to owners)
11. A Compassionate Manager

And finally, a No Kill shelter and community is one where no savable animals are killed. Unfortunately, there are some animals who are hopelessly ill or injured, irremediably suffering, or in the case of dogs, vicious with a poor prognosis for rehabilitation.

These animals are not adoption candidates and sadly, they are sometimes euthanized, unless hospice care and sanctuaries are available. But since the No Kill philosophy does not mandate that vicious dogs or irremediably sick animals be made available for adoption, it is wholly consistent with public health and safety.

A No Kill shelter is primarily a shift from a reactive to a proactive orientation and approach and from a casual, ad-hoc, limited implementation to a comprehensive implementation of Programs and Services which will lead to the greatest declines in killing animals.

Together, we can all contribute, in our own individual way and in a collective way, to ensure the longevity of this wonderful life saving shelter that is the Lanark Animal Welfare Society!

For a more detailed description of the programs of the No Kill Equation, please visit:

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