48 of 53 people found the following review helpful
on November 20, 2009
Winograd hits another grand slam with Irreconcilable Differences. He is one of those rare types that combine the three E's: experience, expertise and ethics. Couple those traits with articulation and you have yourself a great book. The essays cover a range of important issues surrounding our animal friends, and I can think of no person out there better qualified to present them in such a comprehensive, informative and readable way. There's a reason Winograd is the foremost animal advocate around and this is just more proof that lives SHOULD be saved, CAN be saved, and ultimately WILL be saved. The blueprint is before us, the model created, the rest is up to each of us and the shelters in our communities. Thank you for making this a more compassionate world Mr. Winograd.
37 of 42 people found the following review helpful
on August 14, 2011
This series of essays, while thought-provoking, offers very little practical advice on how to implement the No Kill Formula. I would really have appreciated anecdotes of how other No Kill shelters have worked through each step. Winograd repeatedly says these shelters went virtually No Kill "overnight". Well, that's great. But HOW???? Stop talking about how angry you are, and how outraged we ALL should be, and tell us how fix it, please. A book on THAT would be worth my money.
30 of 35 people found the following review helpful
on April 12, 2010
Although I despised Redemption (it's message was deeply buried under the author's ire), I wanted to give Irreconcilable Differences a chance to be the book I wanted - one that gave more information on the virtures of "no kill" than on the evils of "everyone else." I'm glad that I did!
A series of essays on what has gone wrong with animal "sheltering," this book makes a much better argument for the no kill movement. The arguments are succinct, compelling, and largely free from the distracting hate-mongering of Redemption. It is also more comprehensive, touching on additional issues such as transports (finally acknowledging that the location of potential adopters matters ;), breed bans, etc.
Although Winograd is still all about waging war on traditional shelters, he does differentiate in this book between those who suffer from compassion fatigue (a well-documented malady) and those who simply don't care. There is hope and inspiration in THIS book for ALL those who want to end the killing of homeless animals.
If you resented Redemption (despite believing in the No Kill Equation), give this book a read with an open mind. It could be the inspiration you were hoping for. If you haven't read either book and are curious about no-kill, skip Redemption and start here.
4 stars rather than 5 because it still has a major flaw: no citations. You can NOT "quote" others and include data without referencing your sources and be considered credible. No wonder this book is self-published - a publishing house wouldn't touch it. For this reason, it can never itself serve as source material. Also, Winogad reiterates his comparison of those biologists working to eradicate introduced species (which have the ability to decimate native species and fragile ecosystems) to Nazis and racists, which is just plain idiotic.
32 of 38 people found the following review helpful
on November 27, 2009
"Irreconcilable Differences" is the perfect follow-up to Winograd's outstanding first book "Redemption", making it a wonderful stand-alone read for those who have not yet read the first book. Additionally, those who enjoyed "Redemption" will be captivated by the way Winograd has taken the over-arching, big-picture philosophy so well documented in his first book and brought it to the "boots on the ground", practical, clear level that he reached in "Irreconcilable Differences".
For those who have not yet read "Redemption" Winograd offers a very concise overview of the most important points before launching into a series of topical essays that update the reader on developments in the no kill revolutions since the first book was published. Each of these essays serves to provide insight into the problems, and their related solutions, to the sheltering woes so pervasive in animal shelters in America.
More than a decade has passed since the programs and services referred to as "The No Kill Equation" have been documented and proven. Winograd makes a strong case in "Irreconcilable Differences" that many shelters have taken them to heart, resulting in a sea-change in the animal welfare movement. He also clearly argues that those who have yet to see the way out of an outdated 19th century model of animal sheltering now need to be replaced. They are dinosaurs. Their reign is over.
Anyone who cares about animals should get a copy.
21 of 24 people found the following review helpful
on January 21, 2010
Nathan Winograd is one of those people who are necessary if change in the way our companion animals are treated in shelters, rescues is to happen. In his first book (a most read also)) Redemption, he outlines the historical perspective of how the ASPCA and other national groups have perverted their charters by endorsing the killing on average, 3-5 million dogs and cats each year in the United States, as the only answer to "animal over-population. He also points out that over 17 million Americans every year are looking for companion animals to adopt.
He also lays out the programs that are necessary for the United States to become a no-kill Animal Welfare Country. They are simple steps that could uncage this nation's companion animals without killing them because it is easy. Please buy 10 copies, as I did, and give them to the people in power where you live. Dr. Bear Baker.
10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on January 20, 2010
In keeping with the description of Henry Bergh as The Great Meddler and Richard Avanzino as The Outsider, I have referred to Nathan Winograd as The General of the No Kill Movement. I am one of his troops in the trenches, putting up my own fight in my own region. I knew I would have to read this book and I am thrilled that I did. Although I've read Redemption more times than I should probably admit, I found Irreconcilable Differences to be full of new and helpful information which proves, yet again, that a No Kill Nation is within our reach.
How anyone could read this book or Nathan's first book and not feel compelled to explore the methods which are working in open admission, no kill facilities across the country is beyond my comprehension. Some may not believe in the message or how it is delivered. To them I say this: put aside your personal agendas and at least consider that there are other ways to save lives. If it can work in Tompkins County and Reno and Charlottesville-Albemarle, it can work anywhere with the help of an informed and energized public. Once people know what's going on and how they can help, they will invariably step up to be part of the solution.
Thank you, Nathan, for once again putting your beliefs on paper and showing us the way in spite of the fierce opposition from those who fight so mightily to preserve the status quo.
9 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on February 9, 2010
It is forbidden to kill a homeless person, but why is it okay to do so to a stray dog? "Irreconcilable Differences: The Battle for the Heart and Soul of America's Animal Shelters" discusses the 'mercy killing' of stray animals and the mission of animal shelters to save and protect these animals. The essays are a continuation and a follow up to Wingrad's previous work with "The Myth of Pet Overpopulation & The No Kill Revolution in America", covering what has changed since he published that volume three years ago. "Irreconcilable Differences" is a must read for those concerned about the inhumanity of some humane societies.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on October 23, 2013
We have come a long way since 1975 when shelters euthanized 13.5 million animals. Because of aggressive spay & neuter promotions we have reduced euthanasia by 75% during the last 40 years. [...] This massive reduction in euthanasia has little or nothing to do with Nathan Winograd. Mr. Winograd appeared on the scene less than 10 years ago. Here are the facts: Of the 5,000 independent animal shelters nationwide, there are only 74 no-kill shelters endorsed by Mr.Winograd. These 74 no-kill shelters make up only 1.4% of the total number of shelters nationwide. Of these 74 Winograd-endorsed shelters, only 15 say they are following his "No-Kill Equation." (Read the results of our survey here: [...]The reality is...only 134 no-kill communities out of 21,585 communities...That means a total of .6 % communities approved by Mr.Winograd. Despite their good intentions many of these no-kill shelters are failing miserably by refusing to accept...by turning away... cats and dogs to unknown fates. 3-4 million animals per year are euthanized in shelters. The majority of these dogs and cats the hardest to find appropriate homes for. 2.3 million adult cats & 900,000 dogs (characterized as 'pit bull types') lose their lives each year in shelters. You cannot force the public to adopt these animals...you cannot force a dog-lover to adopt a cat. You cannot convince someone who wants a small young dog to adopt a senior 50 pound Pit Bull. Yet Mr. Winograd continues to blame shelters for the preferences ...and for the irresponsibility...of the general public, regardless of the overwhelming evidence otherwise. In ONE DAY & EVERYDAY over 733,000 puppies are advertised online by breeders. How is it possible that adult cats and pit-bull type dogs can EVER compete with such odds stacked against them. It isn't, that's how. [...] Everyone wants an answer. Limit breeding. Spay & neuter.
Nathan Winograd's accusatory and thoughtless rhetoric is dangerous. He has put shelter animals at grave risk by denying pet overpopulation. This gives the general public the impression that it's not necessary to fix their pets. It encourages people to overlook shelter pets & buy from a breeder instead. Mr. Winograd claims there is an adopter for every stray animal....therefore there is no need to decrease the population of cats & dogs being born. This is a symptom of the no kill movement: 25% of all animal hoarding investigations in the US involve companion animal "rescues." Approximately 1,500 animal rescues are investigated for abuse and neglect in the US every year, and according to experts, the phenomenon is on the rise. [...] Mr. Winograd disparages and maligns every national animal protection group in the United States, asking people to instead, send their money to HIM. Long-time no-kill leader Peter Marsh has an effective plan which been proven to work in New Hampshire . Because of the tireless and rational spay & neuter efforts of Mr. Marsh, New Hampshire is considered a no-kill state. Peter Marsh has faced this country's overwhelming pet overpopulation crisis head-on. Mr. Marsh's number one solution? We must actively seek out the people who cannot afford to spay & neuter their pets ....the cause of 80% of the pet overpopulation. This is top priority of rational proven no-kill solutions. We must STOP , as best we can, the overwhelming number of cats and dogs born every minute of every day. So fewer animals end up in shelters in the first place: [...]
8 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on May 13, 2010
This is a great book. I encourage everyone to read it, along with Winograd's first book, Redemption. These books really will change your entire way of thinking about animal sheltering because so many things that we have been "taught" by the shelters for decades is completely wrong.
It is disgusting and disturbing to find out what is really going on in America's shelters and at the largest animal welfare organizations. But, now that we know, it is equally as inspiring to know that many compassionate people are working hard to change the landscape. No Kill is inevitable.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on October 19, 2013
Anyone who rescues and bottle feeds knows you do not feed a kitten on it's back, they are not human infants and you would kill them,That makes this book suspect in my opinion. You feed in a more natural position (kittens nurse on their stomachs)
As stated by previous reviews, the main flaw in this book is a lack a solution. You can not have an open intake shelter and remain no kill. Simple fact. Not with the lack of laws and enforcement. It kills me but there it is. The only solution is tougher laws, and a willingness to enforce those laws. Political will is lacking, we need to find out where our representatives stand on these issues and make sure they vote on and introduce legislation that requires People to spay, neuter their pet/pets, not be allowed to drop litter after litter of puppies or kittens at shelter or animal control year after year because they fail to spay or neuter. Registration of every pet should be required and when each pet is registered they should be required to provide documentation of where they acquired the animal.Or pay a fine if they fail to register.
Shut down puppy mills. If an animal is kept for breeding they should be licenced and and a fee paid for the privilege. Account for every animal and register all litters, as well as keeping track of where each animal goes or receive a hefty fine.Be inspected on a regular basis ( fees for registration and fines for failure to spay or neuter would cover the cost) Make it illegal to allow pets to roam. Allow for feral colonies of cats, they do quite well on their own, and if monitored T/N/R of newcomers( trap/neuter/returned) the populations slowly dies out.I myself am fine with feral cats, however they are targets for cruelty. There are no fool proof solutions, too many fools, but these type of incentives would be a start. Winogrand rants, touches a nerve in a large population of society and therefore he sells books, not solutions.