Following a frantic year, Pets In Need gradually reopens its doors to Palo Alto's animal lovers | June 18, 2021 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

Cover Story - June 18, 2021

Following a frantic year, Pets In Need gradually reopens its doors to Palo Alto's animal lovers

Nonprofit welcomes back volunteers, prepares to resume pop-in visits

by Gennady Sheyner

Ever since Pets In Need took over Palo Alto's animal adoption services in late 2018, it has been operating in an atmosphere of change and uncertainty.

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Email Staff Writer Gennady Sheyner at [email protected]


Posted by Ivor
a resident of Los Altos
on Jun 17, 2021 at 11:00 pm

Ivor is a registered user.

Even before Pets in Need took over the animal shelter, Palo Alto has not had a really effective low-cost spay/neuter clinic for some years now. After two vet techs quit, the clinic has never recovered anything like its former surgical capacity. As a Los Altos taxpayer, low-cost spay/neuter is a service for which our city has contracted with Palo Alto and has evidently not been receiving for a long time. So those of us working to manage the population of unwanted cats have to travel to SVACA in Santa Clara or HSSV in Milpitas to get community cats spayed/neutered at reasonable cost. The pandemic has only made this much worse with clinics being closed or severely limited; this will be a really bad year for kittens. Palo Alto is also the *only* one of the five shelters in Santa Clara county to refuse to participate in the "Feral Freedom" program which provides for spaying/neutering, vaccinating, microchipping and ear-tipping otherwise healthy, but unsocialized cats and returning them to their territory to live out their lives in peace instead of simply killing them (which has been shown to be an ineffective method of population control). So while this article says Pets in Need "prides itself on being a no-kill shelter," that is a bit delusional. What they mean is they won't kill an otherwise healthy, adoptable animal. For the unsocialized ones, the trip to the shelter is one-way. Perhaps Mr Mollica should be asked to explain what "possible" actually means in his quoted statement: "Our business was to save as many animals as possible." I think his definition is probably rather different from mine .

Posted by Lydia
a resident of Menlo Park
on Jun 18, 2021 at 10:07 am

Lydia is a registered user.

Thanks so much to Pets In Need for helping us adopt a pair of rabbits from the "Boba Tea" litter. We were able to "meet" the bunnies first via Zoom, which was helpful, and spay/neuter surgery was included as part of the adoption fee, which is normally hundreds of dollars. However, as first-time rabbit owners, there was a very steep learning curve and we weren't informed that our rabbits would try to procreate when they were siblings and only a few months old (fortunately we separated them in time, and we had the extra equipment on hand to be able to do so). And providing a good life for a rabbit (like any pet) requires understanding their particular needs, which include space to run, things to gnaw on so they won't be tempted by your furniture, and accommodating their need to dig. For those who are completely new to rabbit parenting, I would recommend going through a dedicated rabbit rescue organization like The Rabbit Haven in Sunnyvale or East Bay Rabbit Rescue in Livermore.

Posted by Optimist Pessimist Realist
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Jun 29, 2021 at 1:52 pm

Optimist Pessimist Realist is a registered user.

Ivor, I appreciate the information you provided. The lack of affordable spay/neuter at PIN added to the strain for PHS in San Mateo as well as the places you mentioned in your county. I hope PIN gets up to speed and resumes s/n this year because it’s sorely needed. Fwiw they’ve always called themselves “no kill”, to the detriment of their organization, some staff and some adopters.

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