Georgia among the top in the nation for euthanizing shelter animals, report shows

ATLANTA — A group that works with local animal shelters to help become no-kill says Georgia had the fifth-most animal killings in shelters in the U.S. in 2023.

Best Friends Animal Society says it is “working with animal welfare organizations and stakeholders statewide to save every pet who can be saved and reach no-kill through Georgia by 2025.”

According to the group, Georgia killed more than 19,000 cats and dogs last year that had been brought to shelters and were never adopted.

Texas, California, North Carolina and Florida rounded out the top 5 states for euthanasia.

Channel 2 Action News has reported on the trouble that animal shelters across the metro have had with overcrowding.

At one point, Lifeline Animal Shelter in DeKalb County said they had more than 600 dogs and had to euthanize a certain number of dogs for space.

Around the same time, Fulton County Animal Services said they have more than 400 dogs that need to be fostered or adopted.


Fulton County opened a new shelter in November to help ease overcrowding.

“This is long overdue,” Fulton County Animal Services Shelter Director Audrey Shoemaker said.

The new building can fit 376 dogs, 99 cats, 12 small animals, 18 chickens and six livestock.

DeKalb County said in February that it will audit LifeLine Animal Project which manages its animal shelter after reports of inhumane conditions.

The audit will look into concerns about how the shelter operates, small dog cages, dirty cages, cleanliness, clogged air vents, and overcrowding.

Best Friends said in 2023, 380,000 dogs and cats were killed in our nation’s shelters just because they didn’t have safe places to call home.

They are hoping to bring that to an end.