Cleveland “Join ASPCA® Mission: Orange™” Communities


Cleveland Selected by ASPCA as One of Three “Join ASPCA® Mission: Orange™” Communities

April 10, 2008 – It was announced today that Cleveland  is one of three communities from around the country chosen by the ASPCA® (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) to participate in the prestigious “Join ASPCA® Mission: Orange™” national campaign to end the needless euthanasia of adoptable companion animals.  The Cleveland APL and Cleveland City Kennel teamed up and completed a rigorous, competitive selection process that looked at a demonstrated track record of leadership, number of animals impacted, and commitment to seeking progressive solutions.

For the next year, the Cleveland Animal Protective League and the City of Cleveland Kennels, as well as private and public partner animal welfare agencies in Buncombe County, NC, and Oklahoma City, OK, will work with experts from the ASPCA and the Richmond SPCA to collect and analyze data specific to their communities.  This will enable them to develop and implement programs designed to decrease the number of unwanted animals entering their shelters and increase the rate of animals being placed.  At the end of the year, the Cleveland team will have the opportunity to apply to become an ASPCA Mission: Orange target community and receive additional funding toward implementing these new programs.

“John Baird, the City of Cleveland Animal Warden, and I are thrilled to have a chance to join what is a unique effort to reduce the number of unwanted pets in our community and continue to save even more lives,” said Sharon Harvey, Executive Director of the Cleveland Animal Protective League. “We have come a long, long way in increasing the number of animals successfully placed through our adoption and transfer programs, but we know we can do more.  We believe this opportunity will help us to identify progressive services and solutions that will further increase our ability to overcome the pet overpopulation and homelessness crisis in Cleveland and, ultimately, throughout our county and region.”

“This intense year-long learning experience is designed to help these communities save more animals’ lives,” said the ASPCA’s President and CEO, Ed Sayres. “Each of these communities has demonstrated that they are more than ready for the challenge.”

“While the geography and demographics of the selected communities vary widely, they all have several things in common: established working relationships among the participating agencies; high volume spay/neuter; and leaders with a real and demonstrated passion for making positive change,” said the ASPCA’s Julie Morris, Senior Vice President of National Outreach. “The more we can replicate success in different communities, the faster we can provide a proven, sustainable approach to improving live release rates for all communities.”

According to the ASPCA’s Bert Troughton, who is directing the effort, the application process was good preparation for the year ahead. “Participating communities and partner agencies will have one month to collect and record detailed animal population data using the ASPCA Mission: Orange dashboard,” said Troughton. “This information will form a detailed snapshot of the baseline year, from which ASPCA statisticians and community shelter professionals can determine which animal populations in these communities are most at risk and why.”

ASPCA Mission: Orange was originally launched in 2007 to save those animals most at-risk (i.e., shelter animals). The hallmark of the campaign, which is taking place in Austin, TX, Gulfport-Biloxi, MS, Philadelphia, PA, Spokane, WA, and Tampa, FL, is a collaboration with leading animal welfare agencies and organizations to implement a save rate at or above 75 percent for unwanted pets entering shelters.
For information about ASPCA Mission: Orange, and what may lie ahead for these communities, please visit

About the Cleveland APL
Located in the Tremont District, the Cleveland Animal Protective League is the largest nonprofit humane society in Northeast Ohio and relies solely on donations to investigate and prosecute animal cruelty and provide shelter and care for nearly 11,000 homeless animals a year. The Cleveland APL’s mission is to foster compassion and end animal suffering through adoption, humane investigations, spay/neuter and education.  The APL has been serving the animals of Northeast Ohio since 1913.

About the City of Cleveland Kennel
The Kennel responds to all calls for services or complaints concerning animal ordinances and provides stray animal pickup throughout the City of Cleveland. The Kennel operates an adoption program, transfers adoptable dogs to other shelters for placement, and participates in spay/neuter initiatives.

About the ASPCA®
Founded in 1866, the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) was the first humane organization established in the Americas and today has one million supporters in North America. The ASPCA’s mission is to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States. The ASPCA provides national leadership in anti-cruelty, animal behavior, humane education, government affairs and public policy, shelter support, and animal poison control. The NYC headquarters houses a full-service animal hospital and adoption facility. The Humane Law Enforcement department enforces New York’s animal cruelty laws and is featured on the reality television series “Animal Precinct” on Animal Planet. Visit for more information.