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  • Writer's pictureSusan Houser

San Francisco, CA

San Francisco is a combined city and county located in northern California. It has a population of about 837,000 people. The city/county shelter is San Francisco Animal Care And Control (ACC). The ACC performs all the functions of a municipal shelter, including animal control and accepting owner surrenders, and it has an adoption center. It has had a partnership known as the “Adoption Pact” with the private San Francisco SPCA since 1994. The SPCA pulls animals from ACC under the agreement, and it also does some intake directly from the public.

The San Francisco SPCA has been recognized as a leader in the field of animal sheltering since back in the 1800s. And of course it is well-known for its origination of the No Kill communities concept in the 1990s. The SPCA today continues to be innovative, as with its shelter-neuter-return program for community cats. In addition to animals that the SPCA accepts from ACC under the Adoption Pact, it also takes in many animals from outside of San Francisco, including under an agreement with Stockton.

The ACC and the SPCA have reported their combined statistics for years. In the 1990s the Adoption Pact achieved live release rates of over 75%, which was the highest of any major city at that time. In more recent years the combined live release rates have generally been in the mid-80% range. In 2013, the coalition finally broke the 90% barrier, with a combined 92% live release rate (excluding transfers between ACC and the SPCA). The ACC offers owner-requested-euthanasia, and if that number plus animals who died in shelter care are counted as euthanasias the live release rate was 89%.



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