• Community protests against animal shelter gas chamber

    By: Nate Stewart


    ROWAN COUNTY, N.C. - Community members in Rowan County protested using a gas chamber to kill animals.

    Protesters said they understand the shelter has to euthanize animals but not like that.

    Protesters demanded the Rowan Animal Shelter stop using a carbon monoxide gas chamber as a method of putting down stray animals.

    County leaders said they're aware of the controversy and have already set aside money to study it.

    As dozens of stray animals go unadopted at the Rowan County animal shelter, county officials said they must face the reality of battling animal overpopulation with euthanasia. But residents are demanding change to how they go about it.

    Dozens of protesters outside the county commission meeting brought their pets, and held signs that read, "End gassing now."

    They hope the county will instead use lethal injection.

    But the county's animal control supervisor said gassing is humane and that type of euthanasia puts animals down without pain.

    Residents presented commissioners with a petition of 9,500 signatures, hopeful the county changes the way they put animals to sleep.

    Commissioner Mike Caskey said the issue could be on the agenda in the next few months.

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