Southeast Ohio Shelters Report Different Euthanasia Statistics

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The Athens County Dog Shelter and an area business owner are both working to protect stray dogs in Athens.

Terri Ann Smith is the owner of Thrift Store for Animal Friends, which she opened in April.               

She keeps the pets at her shelter, which is also her home, and uses the Thrift Store to help find the dogs' proper homes.

"If dogs end up at the pound there is a good chance that they will be euthanized, so that's why I rescue them," Smith said. "I've never taken a dog to a government impound facility; I just never have in all the years I've been rescuing."

According to Smith, most of the proceeds from her Thrift Store go toward her shelter.

Smith calls animal shelters like the Athens County Dog Shelter "kill shelters" because of the number of dogs they euthanize per year.

Smith says she requested the paperwork from the Athens County Dog Shelter in 2008 to find out how many dogs were being euthanized.

"When I finally got the paperwork, one month in particular, they had euthanized 900 dogs," Smith said.

The Athens County Dog Shelter reports a very different figure.

"I would say you could count them on one hand per year and if there is a problem with overpopulation we contact all the rescues, we contact all the groups that help us and let them know we're full," Athens County Dog Warden Jeff Koons said.

Koons stated that around this time of the year more dogs come to the shelter, but overall, the number of dogs taken-in this year is about average.

Smith, on the other hand, says overcrowding in dog shelters is a huge problem.

Smith thinks people are not aware of the importance of getting their pets spayed and neutered.