Shelter killing is the leading cause of death of healthy dogs and cats in the United States. Proponents of the “No Kill” movement in Arizona say it doesn’t have to be.

No Kill Maricopa County presents “Redemption,” a documentary film by Nathan Winograd, the founder of the No Kill revolution in America. The film will debut 5 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 16 at Phoenix Theatre, 100 E. McDowell Road.

Starting with the founding of the first Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) in North America by Henry Bergh and continuing to this very day, the film is a story of betrayal, hope and redemption as told by volunteers, elected officials and shelter staff who are fighting to save animals’ lives.

When the early founders of the animal protection movement died, a fiery zeal flickered out and the humane movement all but went to sleep. After over 100 years of this deadly practice, the grassroots of the animal protection movement is finally waking up.

Animal shelters in numerous communities have implemented a series of programs and services to reduce birthrates, increase adoptions, and keep animals with their responsible caretakers. As a result, they are achieving unprecedented results, saving upwards of 95 percent of all impounded animals. So far, 250 communities, which represent between 300 and 500 cities and towns, are No Kill, and the number continues to grow.

Once the emphasis is placed on saving all animals except for the very sick and those with behavioral issues non-responsive to rehabilitation, the unnecessary killing of animals stops. The fundamental lesson from the experiences of these communities is that the choices made by shelter leaders are the most significant variables in whether animals live or die.

Tickets to “Redemption” are $5 and are available online at or at the Phoenix Theatre box office. Following the documentary, there will be a presentation regarding the current status of the No Kill movement and what can be done locally to save more lives. For more information, e-mail or find them on Facebook at No Kill Maricopa County.


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