Seven reasons for animal homelessness in America

The main, structural reasons for animal homelessness in America.

There are many different reasons for animal homelessness, but there are some major, systemic issues that need to be addressed. Visit our PTP Academy to learn more about the underlying reasons and what you can do to help.

1. Despite millions of homeless pets, for-profit breeders are allowed.

2. Pets are often ‘acquired’ based on impulse and returned later.

3. The cost of medical care for pets can be very high.

4. There is a huge need for foster parents to provide temporary homes for pets.

5. We have allowed to many animals due to lack of neutering and spaying.

6. It is difficult to find affordable rental housing which allows pets.

7. Some pet owners are not capable / willing of taking care of their pets.

Important – The 3 Major National Parties views on Animal Homelessness.

Marcel van der Stroom
Marcel van der Stroom

After 20 years in the high-tech industry, Marcel founded Progress Through Photography with the mission to combat animal homelessness in Arizona.

Introduction

At Progress Through Photography, one of our goals is to educate the American public on the underlying, systemic reasons for animal homelessness. With the election only a bit over a month away, we want to explore what the major parties say about the issue of animal homelessness and the underlying, systemic issues that contribute to the problem.

Summary

Too busy to read it all? Based on the research we have done, the Green Party is the only national party that has any significant content in their platform on animal homelessness issues.

Why are the national party’s positions important ?

While a lot of political decisions are made on the State, County and City level, the national policy makers can often impact them. Major decisions on related topics like housing, homelessness, medical care and animal abuse legislation are made on the highest political levels. In subsequent blog posts, I will dive into the Arizona ballot in detail.

How did I do my research ?

I start with looking at the Party’s platforms, which are public. Here you can find the 2020 Democratic Platform, the 2016 Republican Platform (there is no updated platform) and the 2020 Green Party Platform.

  1. I looked at the table of content of the platforms for a section on animals, pets or animal homelessness.
  2. I searched the platforms for occurrences of “animal”, “pets”, “cat” and “dog”
  3. I searched Google on “Democratic / Republican / Green party policy on animal homelessness.

In a future posts, I will search the platforms for occurrences of keywords related to the 8 reasons for animal homelessness: “housing”,”abuse”,”medical care”.

So, with that out of the way, let’s start looking at the results.

US Democratic Party

Platform Search Results:

No topic on animal homelessness found.

Direct Search: Animal, Pet, Cat, Dog

Related to farm animals: “We will also review federal guidelines to improve workers safety at facilities that raise and process meat for consumption, and use the federal government’s procurement power to incentivize the humane treatment of farm animals in accordance with commercially-recognized animal welfare standards”

Related to animal transmitted diseases: We will reinvigorate and build upon the North American Plan for Animal and Pandemic Influenza launched under the Obama-Biden Administration and work with our partners to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, which has caused the biggest economic decline in history across Latin America and the Caribbean.

Related to big-game hunting:Democrats will recommit to the Obama-Biden Administration’s National Strategy for Combating Wildlife Trafficking and ban importation into the United States of hunting trophies from Africa’s iconic and endangered big cats.

Summarized, there is no significant content in the Democratic Party’s 2020 platform regarding animal homelessness issues.

US Republican Party

Platform Search Results:

No topic on animal homelessness found.

Direct Search: Animal, Pet, Cat, Dog

Related to wildfires: “The increase in catastrophic wildfires has been needlessly killing millions of animals and destroying homes and watersheds for decades in the western states.”

Related to wounded veterans: “More than ever, our government must work with the private sector to advance opportunities and provide assistance to those wounded in spirit as well as in body, whether through experimental efforts like the PAWS (Puppies Assisting Wounded Servicemen) program for service dogs or through the faith-based institutions that have traditionally been providers of counseling and aid.”

Summarized, there is not significant content in the Republican Party’s 2016 platform regarding animal homelessness issues.

US Green Party

Platform Search Results:

There is a topic called “Ethical Treatment of animals”.

Related to breeding: “Prohibit large scale commercial breeding facilities, such as “puppy mills,” because of the massive suffering, overpopulation, and ill health such facilities produce.

Related to overpopulation: Subsidize spay and neuter clinics to combat the ever-worsening pet overpopulation problem that results in the killing of millions of animals every year. Where unwanted companion animals are being killed in shelters, we advocate mandatory spay and neuter laws.

Related to animal abuse: Ban the exploitation of animals in violent entertainment and sports.

Direct Search: Animal, Pet, Cat, Dog

Regarding animal consumption as food: “Preserve and expand product labeling requirements to ensure that consumers are informed about the origin, ingredients and ecological life cycle of all products, including animal testing and the product’s organic,recycled and genetically-engineered content.”

Regarding testing on animals: Substitute chemical safety testing on animals with alternatives that do not use animals, wherever such alternative tests or testing strategies are available.

Other – see above.

Summarized, the Green Party is the only major party with significant content in their platform regarding animal homelessness issues. The are very specific about the topics of spaying, neutering, commercial breeding and animal abuse.

Conclusion

The two mainstream parties have not carved out a dedicated section for the topic of animal homelessness. Only the green party has this, and comes with a specific vision on overpopulation control. However, since the Green Party does not play a huge role nationally in terms of seats in the chambers of the house, it is unlikely that animal homelessness issues will be a big part of the political discussion in Washington DC.

What’s next?

In future posts, I will look at:

  1. the platforms again, but at the broader policies that might have an impact on animal homelessness in the USA.
  2. the Arizona ballots and discuss the impact on animal homelessness of the electable politicians and the propositions.

Other articles to read

From the Humane Society Legislative Fund: https://hslf.org/blog/2020/09/you-vote-year-where-are-your-federal-legislators-animal-protection-issues