Controversy Between Columbus Co. Animal Shelter and Humane Society

APRIL 14, 2006 -- Two Columbus County animal organizations are at odds over a claim that animals are being put to sleep too soon.

Members of the Humane Society are complaining that the Animal Shelter is putting animals to sleep before the required hold time expires.

Officials are required to hold the animals for 72 hours. Director Rossie Hayes says the only time he puts animals to sleep before 72 hours is if they are sick.

One member of the Humane Society who works for the News Reporter said 40 animals were at the shelter and all but two were killed.

Hayes says that's untrue and says he has records to prove it.

"Each kennel that a dog is in, there is a paper saying where he came from, what time he came in, what type of dog he is, and whether or not he had to be held for 72 hours. If he had to be held for 72 hours there is a time and date when he can be adopted," said Hayes.

We talked to one Whiteville resident who says she's been to the animal shelter every day for a week and knows for a fact that only 15 to 16 dogs were put to sleep. She also says the animals were there for at least 72 hours.

Reported by Kacey Gaumer