Greenville will stop accepting stray animals from Spartanburg County

Spartanburg County prepares to take care of its own stray dogs and cats when Greenville County Animal Care soon stops accepting Spartanburg County pets.

Last week, the Greenville County shelter announced on Facebook that it would end its nearly 11-year agreement with Spartanburg County on June 30.

The Greenville County Shelter began accepting Spartanburg County strays in 2011 when Spartanburg County split from the Spartanburg Humane Society for economic reasons. Spartanburg County paid the company $700,000 a year.

Spartanburg County then contracted Greenville County Animal Care for half that amount for agreeing to take in Spartanburg County strays.

Now the relationship is apparently coming to an end. Greenville County Animal Care made a Facebook post last week, which was later deleted.

An update from the Greenville County Animal Care Facebook page.

“Over the past decade, Greenville County Animal Care has had a wonderful relationship with the Spartanburg County Environmental Enforcement Department, however, it’s time to end Spartanburg County Temporary Housing,” declares the post of the Greenville refuge.

“As Greenville County’s population continues to grow, there is a need for even more supportive animal services for our own community and its pets.”

Greenville County spokesman Bob Mihalic confirmed Monday that the June 30 date is when Greenville County Animal Care will stop taking stray Spartanburg.

“Animal Care will do everything in its power to make this transition as smooth as possible,” Mihalic said.

The Greenville Shelter displays the intent:Greenville County Announces Then Removes Post That It Will No Longer House Spartanburg Animals

County Councilman David Britt said Monday he opposed entering into the contract with Greenville County in 2011 because he believed the county should manage its own stray dogs.

He said Alverson is working with Greenville County Administrator Joe Kernell “to go through a period of transition that helps us care for our animals with compassion.

“I am confident that with the leadership of Chairman Lynch, the (Monier) Abusaft Committee Chairman, Cole Alverson, our county team and the many volunteers who advocated for this new facility, we will have a facility that will further demonstrate what Spartanburg is about excellence,” Britt said.

Spartanburg County Response

Spartanburg County spokeswoman Scottie Kay Blackwell said county officials knew that sooner or later her deal with the Greenville County shelter would come to an end.

“Over the past few months, we have entered into preliminary discussions with our community partners about this transition, as well as best shelter operations and practices, as we work to ensure permanent, safe and appropriate housing for our animals. “, she said in an email response. .

“Over the next few weeks, we will be discussing a transition schedule with Greenville County that will ensure continuity of care for our animal community.”

Over the years, animal lovers have approached Spartanburg County Council asking for a countywide shelter to be built.

In June 2019, Spartanburg County Council members told residents they were open to possibly considering the construction of a shelter. The council asked County Administrator Cole Alverson to explore the cost of building and operating one.

Spartanburg County speaks of a shelter:Officials are open to a possible Spartanburg County animal shelter

“If Greenville is about to cut us, we have to be ready,” Councilman Jack Mabry said at the June 2019 council meeting.

Since then, the county council has not addressed the subject publicly.

A cat waits to be adopted at the Spartanburg Humane Society animal shelter in Spartanburg.

The Spartanburg Humane Society shelter is almost full

The Spartanburg Humane Society operates a private shelter on Dexter Road and accepts pets only from town residents.

Angel Cox, CEO of the shelter, said she suspects the reason Greenville County Animal Care is ending her agreement is because her shelter is running out of space.

“I think Greenville County Animal Care wants to focus on their own animals,” Cox said.

She said the Spartanburg shelter was often filled to capacity – 200 for dogs and 300 for cats. On Monday there were about 200 dogs and 200 cats and kittens.

“For large dogs right now there are 56 dogs on the waiting list,” she said.

Angel Cox of the Spartanburg Humane Society says many shelters are overcrowded with stray dogs and cats.

She said every effort is made to find homes for the animals, without having to euthanize them.

Eleven years ago, up to 90% of animals were euthanized, she said. Today, the shelter is able to accommodate nearly 99% of dogs and cats.

Typically, the only animals that are euthanized are vicious or suffering dogs, she said.

“We work very hard,” she said. “(Euthanizing) is a major and heartfelt decision.”

Meanwhile, Cox said the society’s board had begun planning to build a new, multimillion-dollar shelter with more space, an education center and veterinary care.

“This amount of money is far beyond what we have in the coffers right now,” she said.

She said the project will likely lead to fundraising efforts.

Contact Bob Montgomery at bob.montgomery@shj.com. Please support our coverage of Spartanburg County with a digital subscriptiontion.

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