County sees low animal euthanasia rate
by Mark Andrews
Feb 09, 2013 | 2378 views | 0 0 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend | print
EVHS volunteer Shannon Mulvey plays with Rusty. The 3-year-old male Golden Retriever is up for adoption. SKIP BUTLER/The Daily Tribune News
EVHS volunteer Shannon Mulvey plays with Rusty. The 3-year-old male Golden Retriever is up for adoption. SKIP BUTLER/The Daily Tribune News
As the Etowah Valley Humane Society prepares for its annual Casino Night this month, it also is reporting a low euthanasia rate for Bartow County.

“The euthanasia rate is a Bartow County Animal Control statistic that we can influence greatly, contingent upon how many animals we can save,” EVHS Executive Director Bryan Canty said.

He explained the rate is found by dividing the number of animals euthanized by the number of animals taken in by animal control during a given interval.

The rate of 30 percent is the second-lowest rate in the county’s history. The shelter’s report for January shows animal control took in 464 total animals while EVHS took in 74. There were 54 total adoptions.

There were 182 total rescues for January and a total of 236 lives saved.

“To my knowledge, there have only been three months where the euthanasia rate has been below 50 percent,” Canty said. “One was March 2012 when we were able to save 194 lives and this past December we saved 168 lives, but the intake numbers were a little lower.”

He said several factors can be attributed to the low rate, including the efforts of Animal Coordinator Jan Granai.

“Jan has put forth a great deal of effort not only in selecting the animals that are coming over to our facility, but to also go back to animal control, photograph those animals and cross-post them on her Facebook page so they get the maximum amount of exposure,” Canty said. “Also, [I attribute] the concerted efforts of my staff as a whole.

“They get the concept and they are dedicated and passionate about what they do. They have had a very, very profound impact.”

Canty said he feels the EVHS serves an important role not only in the lives of Bartow County’s animals, but in the lives of its human residents as well.

“If people can remove the stigma that’s attached to shelter animals and come out and visit our facility and see the quality of animals that we have, I think it will change their whole preconceived notion in terms of why shelter animals are second to none,” Canty said. “In addition, it’s just imperative we put forth one of our mantras which is to spay or neuter your animals so we can significantly reduce pet overpopulation in Bartow County.”

He added, “It’s very fortunate to see these types of numbers at this stage in the game, but it’s going to take a readjustment of people’s attitudes in the community to sustain this model of efficiency.”

On Saturday, Feb. 23, America’s Auto Auction in Emerson will be transformed into a casino as the EVHS encourages the community to place its bets on pets during the annual EVHS Casino Night.

“The intent of the casino night is to raise funds for our daily operations and our daily operations include paying the staff that work in our kennels, do the adoption coordinations and our rescue coordinations as well as paying for things like food fees and vet fees and general healthcare for the animals we rescue,” said Shanna Thompson, who is helping to organize the event. “All of our animals come from Bartow County Animal Control, and so every life we can save and make room for and adopt out [helps].”

The event, to be held at 444 Joe Frank Harris Parkway, will last from 7:30 p.m. to midnight. It will feature casino gambling, such as blackjack, craps, poker and roulette, as well as food, drinks and entertainment, including music provided by DJ Nunzio and a magician performing illusions and sleight of hand.

When attendees enter the door they will be given a packet of fake money to be used at the tables.

Thompson said in 2012 EVHS was able to place more than 1,700 animals in homes or rescue sites. The 2012 casino night raised more than $18,000.

Opened in 2006, the 4,928-square-foot shelter at 36 Ladds Mountain Road costs about $240,000 per year to manage. The shelter consists of two staff offices, a quarantine room, two visitation rooms, 14 temperature-controlled kennel runs, a cat room with 24 cages and a puppy room with 22 cages.

“This year we are shooting for between $20,000 and $25,000,” Thompson said. “A big way we increase the amount raised is by seeking out sponsors for the event and those sponsors can either be people who give a financial contribution or we have some sponsors who barter with us.”

Tickets are $50 and can be purchased at the EVHS Shelter or BodyPlex Family Fitness.

For more information, call 770-383-3338 or 678-520-8159.