Starting point. The Michigan Pet Alliance (MPA) launched earlier this year, but CEO Joseph Dobesch said the organization is a long time coming. “This is a group of individuals who have been leading these issues for decades,” he said. They thought it was time to come together and speak with one voice to represent the animal shelter and rescue community.”
Early work. MPA’s primary goals are to serve as a resource for local jurisdictions and advocate for the use of best practices in the industry. Chief among the best practices the group advocates is “avoiding medically unnecessary euthanasia of companion animals,” Dobesch said.
In terms of serving as a resource, the group provides best practices to local regions. “What we’re doing locally is say a county is trying to rework its community cat ordinance,” Dobesh said. “He’s helping them establish that system. The counties want to do the right things, but often don’t know what a good program to help homeless companion animals should look like. We are such a resource.
Additionally, this year, the MPA created a grant program for animal shelters in the region.
Next steps. In the near future, MPA is advocating for the state to pass a law requiring lab dogs to be euthanized, rather than euthanized. Beyond that, the MPA wants to continue to serve as a resource and grow. “We are involved in environmental issues in the region,” Dobesh said. “We’ve worked with individual communities to establish rules and regulations that adopt best practices. We’ve been lobbying in Lansing. That’s really growing, and we want to continue that.”
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