GERRY WEISS, Erie Times-News ERIE, Pa. (AP) ¯ There is reverence in this room.For the difficult task performed. For each cat or dog, treated with calming compassion until the very end.
The euthanasia room, tucked away inside the Humane Society of Northwestern Pennsylvania, has little in it. The walls are bare and painted light purple. An examination table is placed near the middle.
A staff member, wearing long rubber gloves, removes the animal from one of the clinic's cages and carries it into this room.Another worker often apologizes to the cat or dog, and then injects it with a dose of Sodium pentathol.
The animal is dead within three or four seconds.But on Thursday at the Humane Society, one animal was followed by another, and another, and another.
Officials said 20 cats were euthanized that day, 15 of which were healthy and at the shelter for less than two weeks.
Euthanasia, predominantly of cats, is soaring at area animal shelters — a crisis, officials say, brought on by a drop in adoptions and a sharp rise in drop-offs of stray and abandoned cats that local clinics are calling an epidemic.
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