Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

September 10, 2013

Open house set at Greenup animal shelter

Officials ready to show off improvements

Kenneth Hart
The Independent

GREENUP — The Greenup County Animal Shelter will have an open house later this month to showcase recent improvements.

The event is scheduled for noon to 5 p.m. Sept. 28, Judge-Executive Bobby Carpenter told the fiscal court on Tuesday. The shelter is on Ky. 2 at the top of North Fork Hill.

The county purchased the animal shelter in 2008 from Don and Nora Grubb for $225,000. The Grubb had previously operated it the facility as a private shelter taking in strays from Greenup, Carter, Elliott and Johnson counties.

Carpenter said the county recently spent about $10,000 on upgrades designed to bring the shelter into compliance with the standards of the Kentucky Humane Society. He also said the county had worked closely with a representative of the group in making those improvements.

“We’ve spent a lot of money to come into compliance with what the Kentucky Humane Society wants,” he said. “We’ve got a really nice shelter and I’m proud of it.”

Carpenter said the improvements to the shelter have included the construction of new holding pens. He also said a “gas chamber” area that was previously used to euthanize unwanted animals had been converted to a holding area.

The county had been contracting with a veterinarian to euthanize animals, but Carpenter said the shelter was now set up to do that in-house, which he said should result in substantial savings for the county. He said animals would be put down using injections, the same way vets do it.

At the same time, Carpenter said shelter personnel had stepped up efforts to adopt out animals, thereby reducing the need for them to be euthanized. For example, he said, shelter director Doug Jordan set up a booth at the recent Greenup County Fair and was there every night with animals that needed homes.

He said Jordan also was working though veterinarians and pet stores to try to place shelter animals in homes.

In addition to allowing the public to see the improvements to the shelter, Carpenter said he was hoping the open house would help to squelch what he said were false rumors and criticism of the facility being circulated on the Internet.

“My hope is that people will open their eyes and shut their mouths,” he said.

One ongoing source of criticism, Carpenter said, has been the shelter’s policy of not allowing members of the public into the back area of the facility. Carpenter said that rule existed strictly for insurance reasons, and noted the county had recently installed cameras in the back area of the pound.

KENNETH HART can be reached at khart@dailyindependent.com or (606) 326-2654.