SYLVANIA, GA (WTOC) - Plenty of animal lovers and rescue volunteers came out Wednesday to see the brand new Screven County Animal Shelter. Many of the happiest visitors were members of the Friends of Screven County Animals, or FOSCA.
"This is such a blessing. If you go across the street to see where it is, and what you see here there's no comparison," assured FOSCA's Lou Morgan.
The 6,000 square foot facility is indoors, giving animals access to heat and air and protection from extreme weather. With the new space and the larger pins, they'll be able to hold 3 times the number of dogs as the old shelter.
County leaders used local sales tax to pay for the new shelter and used an inmate construction team to keep costs low.
"If we'd used a contractor, we'd have spent a million dollars. We've spend about $175,000 for this," said County Commissioner J.C. Warren.
No one on two legs is happier for it all than Shelter Director Thomas Lariscy. He believes the building will help keep animals healthier and more "adoptable".
"There are numerous rescue groups working with us to find good homes for these animals, he said.
But the animals at the old shelter will stay and get adopted out from there. However, he refuted rumors those animals would be euthenized to close the old shelter.
He said he wants as many dogs as possible to have new homes elsewhere. And he doesn't want to do anything to compromise the shelter that will serve the community for years to come.
The shelter is located on Rocky Ford Road, off U.S. Highway 301 South and near the county's recycling center. The shelter's hours are Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.