Waiting for a Home: Thousands of unwanted animals pack Tri-Cities shelters


News Channel 11’s special report “Waiting For a Home” is part of our mission to help the unwanted animals in the Tri-Cities find homes. This is part 2 of 5.

(WJHL) – The numbers reveal the unfortunate realities of pet overpopulation. 

If there is no more room, many shelters are forced to euthanize. 

News Channel 11 requested records from the shelters in Washington County, TN, Washington County, VA, Sullivan County, TN and Greene County, TN for 2018. 

  • The Washington County-Johnson City Animal Shelter has had an intake of around 4000, they adopted out around 2500 and euthanized 420 animals.  
  • The Washington County VA C.C. Porter Animal Shelter has had an intake of around 1500 animals, adopting out around 150 and euthanizing more than 500 cats and dogs. 
  • Greeneville Animal Control has had an intake of more than 1300 animals, they adopted out over 550 dogs and cats and euthanized over 650. 
    • Note: Animal control is funded by taxpayers. There is no county funded animal shelter in Greene County, the shelter here is the Greeneville-Greene County Humane Society, which relies solely on donations. They work with animal control to help place animals on the euthanasia list into homes. 
  • The Sullivan County Animal Shelter, with numbers reported through April 2018, had an intake of 600, they adopted around 315 and euthanized just over 90 animals. 
    • Note: these numbers do not reflect the summertime intake, which for shelters in our region tends to be higher. This also does not reflect euthanasia numbers for the summer months which according to the shelter often happens weekly during the summer. 

“I know this summer we took in like 51 kittens in a two day period. That’s just an idea of how the cat population can explode,” says Kevin King, director of the Unicoi County Animal Shelter. 

Many shelters in our region either exist at maximum capacity or hit it several times throughout the year. 

“We stay at max capacity most of the time. Sometimes we get 2, 3, 4 kennels open but everybody in rescue knows as soon as kennels open up they fill right back up, says King.

Waiting for a Home

Part 1: Waiting for a Home: Why are animal shelters so crowded?

Part 2: Waiting for a Home: Thousands of unwanted animals pack Tri-Cities shelters

Part 3: Waiting for a Home: What can be done to stop animal shelter overcrowding?

Part 4: Waiting for a Home: Animal shelter volunteers – a voice for the voiceless

Part 5: Waiting for a Home: Find your local animal shelter

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