Laurens County Animal Control recently broke ground on a long-awaited expansion for the facility, which will include a new building with 16 new kennels.
The expansion is funded by an agreement among Laurens County and the cities of Laurens and Clinton. Laurens and Clinton are funding half of the $104,000 project.
“This week, we hoping to be forming the concrete pad, and we’ll be erecting the building soon thereafter,” said Laurens County Public Works Director Rob Russian.
The new 1,500-square-foot building will house 16 new kennels, which will grow the facility’s capacity from 29 standard kennels to 45. Capacity would grow from around 40 dogs to around 60 with the expansion.
“The big thing is to give the dogs we take in more time rescuers and adopters,” Russian said.
He said the expansion is being done “in house,” so he expects the project to come in under budget, allowing for the extra funds to be used on other LCAC needs.
“We’d like to do some renovations on the two older buildings,” Russian said. “We have some fencing issues and other things we hope to take care of.”
The new building will include cement walls instead of fencing between the 15-square-foot kennels. The interior will also include special coatings for the masonry, walls and floors that help prevent the spread of viruses, germs and bacteria and are more easily cleaned.
The LCAC is planning to use the same coating in the older areas and add some masonry inside the current kennels, Russan said.
The agreement among the county and its two largest municipalities is one of several partnerships driving improvements at LCAC.
“We have a program with the local humane society with them up and running, it’s been kind of a joint effort overall, and I think we’re making some progress,” Russian said, noting that the facility’s euthanasia rate has been cut in half from the 40 percent it was five years ago. “There are other social media sites like Friends of Laurens County Animal Control, and we’ve seen some of the other social media like the Humaine Society, lost-and-found pages all spreading the knowledge of the problem we have around. The more people involved, the better.”