Animal Control Addresses Adoption, Euthanasia Rates

Animal Control Addresses Adoption, Euthanasia Rates

"Euthanasia is always a last choice. I'm always surprised and I'm very proud to say we make every effort we can within reason to get animals to leave here alive, either adopted, rescued, we utilize our foster care providers," said Linda Shea, Kennel Supervisor at the Frederick County Animal Control Center

FREDERICK, Md. -- Last year the Frederick County Animal Control Center took in 5,378 animals but only 40 percent of them found homes. The other 3,090 animals they say, were euthanized. Ten percent were owner requests while the others were for health, temperament and behavioral reasons.

"Euthanasia is always a last choice. I'm always surprised and I'm very proud to say we make every effort we can within reason to get animals to leave here alive, either adopted, rescued, we utilize our foster care providers," said Linda Shea, Kennel Supervisor at the Frederick County Animal Control Center

Animal control says economic hardships may have affected adoption rates and to change that, shelter officials say they're increasing marketing campaigns and community education.

"Educating the public, telling people what we do, that we do have animals for adoption and that the animals we have here are not rejects," said Shea. "They aren't second hand, they may have lived with somebody before but they need homes and so all of that plays into a part."

And as the only animal shelter in the county, officials say it'll take the community's help to increase adoption rates.

"From an animal control perspective but also a community perspective, we're all in this together. We all need to be on board and in order to reduce euthanasia," said Shea. "It's gotta be a community commitment. It can't be the burden of one facility."

A commitment they hope the community takes seriously.

"Increasing adoptions is definitely a goal but I think its not, it's not just the burden of the Frederick County Animal Control, the burden is placed on our community," said Shea.

The shelter says they're also trying to encourage people to spay and neuter their pets.

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