Adoptions up at Lauderdale County animal shelter

Paula Merritt / The Meridian Star

Lauderdale County officials broke ground on a new animal control center in Marion in October and construction is under way.

Adoptions at the Lauderdale County animal shelter have increased over the past year, due in part to the county's use of social media, leaders said Monday. 

Animal Control Director Rocky Rockette said the shelter had 1,027 adoptions in 2019, up from 725 adoptions in 2018.

“We utilize our Facebook page as best we can. We’re showing the public that we’re trying to do a better job for the animals that we serve, networking with rescue organizations in the state of Mississippi and other states,” he said.

The biggest challenge, Rockette said, is getting owners to spay and neuter their pets. 

“When they have offspring, it gets to the point where they’re overwhelming and kind of the first place that they think of is take them to an animal shelter. We’re glad that people do that instead of dumping them on the streets, but ultimately that can be solved by spaying and neutering your pets,” Rockette said.

The shelter was able to spay and neuter most of the animals adopted out through fundraisers, donations and help from other organizations, according to Rockette.  

He said that out of 2,800 animals taken in last year, an estimated 1,500 were euthanized in Lauderdale County. 

“That’s tough. That’s a difficult task that you ask someone to carry out,” Rockette said.

Officials broke ground on a new county animal control center in Marion in October and construction is under way. 

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