Stop Shelters From Killing Dogs and Cats After a Five Day Holding Period

Target: Joseph R. Biden, President of the United States

Goal: Raise the minimum number of days a U.S. shelter must house a dog or cat before euthanizing them.

Many people fail to recognize the prevalence with which kill-shelters exist throughout the United States. The antiquated practice of murdering innocent dogs and cats in the name of population control results in the deaths of nearly one million pets in the U.S. each year. Sometimes, the methods of euthanasia employed are extremely unpleasant or even painful for the animals. Gas chambers–tiny metal boxes that get filled with dogs and cats and pumped with toxic gasses–, for example, are still legal in states across the U.S and cause their victims mental and physical duress.

To make matters worse, over thirty states have laws outlining a “holding period” for kill-shelters. According to this legislation, shelters are currently only required to house a dog or cat for a period of 5-7 days before euthanizing them. Sometimes, however, animals are euthanized in a mere 48 or 72 hours. In the majority of cases, these companion animals are very friendly and healthy, extremely adoptable candidates. Sometimes, the dogs and cats killed are people’s pets that got lost and taken in by overcrowded shelters, never to be returned again.

Killing as many dogs and cats in the shortest amount of time is not the solution to overpopulation. We must make spaying and neutering more affordable to the masses, educate people on the effects of releasing their animals, and better promote adoption and adoptable pets. Sign this petition to encourage legislation to raise the holding period for dogs and cats at kill-shelters across the U.S. and to give these innocent animals a chance at finding a forever home.


Dear President Biden,

The United States is currently in the midst of an extreme pet overpopulation epidemic. Dogs and cats are ending up in shelters by the millions and are being senselessly murdered because of overcrowding. Kill-shelters, which are still largely common throughout the U.S., euthanize nearly one million dogs and cats each year, sometimes employing cruel methods such as gassing.

Animals at these shelters are not given much time to find new homes. In over thirty states, laws establish the required “holding period” for any given pet in a kill-shelter need not exceed 5-7 days. In some cases, dogs and cats receive only 48-72 hours before being destroyed. These animals are almost always highly adoptable candidates, with picture perfect health and temperament. Often, animals that are killed were people’s pets that had gotten lost and turned in. If these animals were given a little more time, maybe these owners could have reunited with their pets.

These animals deserve a better chance at finding a forever home. We are asking you, President Biden, to please increase the minimum period of time kill-shelters are required to hold their animals. Seven days are not enough.


[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Sonia Su


  1. Outlaw kill shelters and only allow no-kill shelters.

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