SHELBYVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Shelby County Animal Control is the first in Kentucky to become a No-Kill facility. In order for the facility to earn the title that means they did not euthanize any of their adoptable animals for a year. No-kill isn't just about helping animals once they have arrived at their shelter, it is about educating people beforehand so that there aren't many animals going to shelters in the first place.
Shelby County No-Kill mission coordinator Kelly Jedlicki showed us around the Animal Control facility Friday afternoon. She pointed out a number of animals that have stayed with them for many months. Typically, shelters hold animals for a short period of time and then, unfortunately, they are euthanized. Jedlicki said that isn't the way it works in Shelby County. She told us about a cat that has been in there care since August 2008.
Many people may think animals living at a shelter aren't lucky, but in Shelby County they are because they are still alive. "I don't think you can go to any other animal control and find a cat that has been there longer than a month," Jedlicki said.
Shelby County Animal Control has a mission. Their mission is to find all of the animals in their care a home. "We don't exclude sick animals, injured animals, old animals," said Jedlicki. "Those are still adoptable."
The animals in their home are getting a second chance at life. Recently, the shelter helped save a cat by the name of Camey, now known as Amelia Earhurt. When Camey arrived at the shelter she was badly injured. Jedlicki thinks she was attacked by a dog or a coyote. It took antibiotics and thousands of dollars worth of surgery to get her back to shape. After everything, Camey was adopted. Jedlicki thinks she would have been euthanized if she were at another shelter.
"We'll work. We'll keep working until we find the perfect home for those animals. It is our mission and we aren't turning our back," Jedlicki said.
Because the cost of medical bills, vaccinations, antibiotics, spaying and neutering can be so high, they pay for it through donations. The money they get from the county is used for utilities, food, water, and salaries.
In the end, for Jedlicki, it's all about the animals. "There are homes right out there. We just need to find them."
If Shelby County Animal Control is overcrowded, they work with about 400 rescues throughout the United States. They have out of state adoptions as well. If the shelter has a case where medical attention cannot save the animal of they have an animal that is a threat to the public, then they will euthanize the animal. But, that is only during extreme cases.