North Carolina Third Nationwide for Deaths in Pet Shelters, New Data From Best Friends Animal Society Says |

First-ever state-by-state ranking released without killing

Kanab, UtahBest Friends Animal Society released its 2020 companion animal survival results (made up of statistics collected in 2019), which provide a national snapshot of the number of dogs and cats entering shelters each year in the United States and the number of dogs and cats that leave these shelters alive. Best Friends also published a first state-by-state ranking of this data (check it out here) and North Carolina is third in the country for deaths in pet shelters.

Of the 241,117 dogs and cats entered shelters in North Carolina, 170,753 found positive placements, while 47,652 were killed (76% were cats), for a save rate of 70.82%. 25.58% of shelters in North Carolina are no-kill (a state is considered a no-kill when every brick and mortar shelter serving and / or located in the state has a 90% saving rate or more).

Compared to 2018, the number of shelter deaths declined by 8,296 statewide. In particular, progress was made by Burke County Animal Services which reduced the number of deaths in shelters by more than 1,400, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Animal Care & Control reduced by 825 and Cumberland County Animal Control which had 480 more animals. who left their establishment than the previous year.

“We are seeing momentum and continued progress toward the goal of ending the slaughter of dogs and cats in U.S. shelters by 2025, as the total number of domestic animals killed in the United States continues to decline and the number of shelters that are not -kill on the way up, ”said Julie Castle, executive director of the Best Friends Animal Society.

The top five states where the most pets need to be rescued are North Carolina, California, Texas, Florida and Louisiana, which together account for more than 50% of shelters killed in the country.

Year-over-year data also shows that the number of dogs and cats killed each year nationwide has increased from about 733,000 to 625,000 (or about 1,700 killed per day). In the United States, an estimated 5.4 million dogs and cats entered shelters in 2019, and 4.2 million were rescued, bringing the national savings rate to 79.02% (2018 was 76.6%).

Castle continued, “Over the past few years, Best Friends and Progressive Shelters nationwide have changed the way they do business and their relationship with their communities: by simplifying policies and adoption requirements; set up community pet care programs; implement trap, neuter and return (TNR) programs for cats in the community; adopt more pet friendly legislation to combat puppy mill dog retailing and racial discrimination; Advocate for more inclusive housing for pets and remove barriers for the public to help pets use technology. And that makes a difference. ”

For the past three years, Best Friends has spearheaded an extensive data collection process, the first of its kind, that involved coordinated outreach to all shelters in America, followed by further research, analysis data and technology development. To create the most comprehensive animal welfare dataset ever released, Best Friends collected data directly from shelters, state and local coalitions, government websites, and even FOIA requests. The Best Friends 2020 dataset of U.S. shelters has a total net intake of 5,360,060 animals representing 4,850 known shelters. Of this admission total, 92% of the data is based on information collected from 3,608 brick and mortar shelters. The remaining 8% is estimated to cover uncollected shelters and their respective counties.

“Best Friends has always believed that anyone can help homeless animals. You don’t need a rescue tag, special identifying information, or permission to help rescue animals. Individual community members are the biggest resource of the no-kill movement. Putting this data directly into the hands of the public enables individual community members and advocates like our members. 2025 Action Team to better understand which shelters and types of pets need help the most and help connect them to those shelters, ”Castle added.

To see the results for 2020, visit

About Best Friends Animal Society

Best Friends Animal Society is one of the nation’s leading animal welfare organizations dedicated to ending the slaughter of dogs and cats in U.S. shelters. In addition to managing rescue programs in partnership with more than 3,100 animal welfare groups across the country, Best Friends has rescue centers in New York City, Los Angeles, Atlanta and Salt Lake City, and manages the largest The country’s no-slaughter sanctuary for pets. . Founded in 1984, Best Friends is a pioneer of the no-kill movement and has helped reduce the number of animals killed in shelters nationwide from about 17 million per year to about 625,000. That means it There are still around 1,700 dogs and cats killed in shelters every day, simply because they don’t have a safe place to call home. We are determined to bring the country to no-kill by 2025. By working with shelters, relief groups, other organizations and you, we will end the killings and save them all. To view our Community Rescue Dashboard and for more information, visit

Join the conversation on, Twitter (@BestFriends) and Instagram (@BestFriendsAnimalSociety).

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