I hate to hear an animal shelter referred to as a "pound". I hate to hear Animal Control Officers referred to as "dog catchers". Just like I hate the deceitful term "no kill". And let's not forget the best one of all, "high kill shelter". Let me give you my take on this. Here are the players.
We have the humane community, aka "rescues". What defines that term in the ears of the general public? The public's perception is people taking animals off the euthanasia table at the shelters or putting themselves at risk to "rescue" a drowning dog in a storm drain. Yes, there are some "rescues" that do take the high euthanization risk pets from the shelters. Yes, there are some that take the sick, injured, and old pets from the shelters. And there are some that do put resources and take risk to "rescue". These rescues have earned the use of the term "rescue" and I do applaud them. I don't hesitate to call them rescuers because they truly are.
Then we have the "adoption" groups who call themselves "rescues". These are the ones who, if they even go to a shelter, cherry pick for purebreds or cute, cuddly that in their minds are the adoptable ones. This also leads to the double standard in the entire industry of what is adoptable. Shelters are given one definition for adoptable and these adoption groups have their own definition. When the shelter can't adopt their "adoptable" ones, these adoption groups complain and call them "kill shelters".
Adoption groups get the best of the best anyway. They are called by owners wanting to "get rid of" their pets and their phones don't stop. Many owners do try to place their pets with a "no kill" "rescue" group first. So a few questions later and a request for a donation, the adoption group decides whether they want the pet. If they don't want it, what happens for the owner then, what choice does the owner have? Either dump the pet or take it to the public shelter, the "kill" shelter. Hard choice, huh? So we end up with strays because the adoption groups want to continue to give the public a bad impression of the shelters by calling them "kill" shelters.
Here's where the conspiracy part comes in. All these negative terms used against animal control shelters only lead to more euthanasia because it is driving away potential homes. Who wants to go somewhere that "kills" animals? But would it be different if the public were told that some animals are "put to sleep" or euthanized? This has a different meaning to the public than using the term "kill". And criticism only drives the public away.
And where does the public end up? At the "rescues", of course. The "rescues" have actually given their competition a bad name and they are the beneficiaries. Much nicer to go to Petsmart than to a shelter. Don't have to worry about seeing cruelty, hateful staff, and barrels of dead animals. These"rescues" are the problem, a big problem. Rather these adoption groups, because like I said at the beginning there are groups that earn the title, are deliberately condemning the shelters for their own personal agendas.
The shelters end up with these adoption groups' rejects is what it comes down to. And these adoption groups are shameless with their complaints about euthanizing when the dead are those they turned away under the guise of the term "no kill". The blood of the shelter animals actually lies on their hands, not the poor employees that have to do their dirty work.
I get really pissed off at this subject. It's one thing to undermine your competition if you are in the restaurant business but this quite another when lives are lost. The use of all these terms is a conspiracy to further personal agendas, the Savior complex usually, and drive people away from the shelters and into their hands. Not all shelters are the same but those who deserve respect should have it.