Cleveland County unplugs gas chamber, decreases euthanasia rate - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Cleveland County unplugs gas chamber, decreases euthanasia rate

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CLEVELAND COUNTY, NC (WBTV) -

The Cleveland County Animal Control Shelter has had a reputation for being one of the worst gas houses in North Carolina, but there are big changes being made this week at the facility.

For starters, the county's gas chamber has been permanently removed. Animal drop pens have also been locked shut.

The idea, County officials tell WBTV, is to decrease the number of animals being euthanized in Cleveland County.

Jason Falls is the chairman of the Cleveland County Board of Commissioners. He said the County has increased funding for the shelter by more than $200,000 in the new County budget.

"That money is money where we found savings, cost savings in other areas," Falls said. "We asked our department heads in the county if they can really tighten their belts, because the county as a whole, we want this done. We want changes here at animal control," Falls said.

The increase in funding will help pay for an adoption coordinator and building upgrades.

According to County records, in 2012, 79% of animals at the shelter were euthanized. In 2013, that number dropped to 37%.

Shelter Supervisor Tripp Bowling told WBTV he expects the rate of euthanized animals in 2014 to drop to 30%. 

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