Humane Society working to eliminate gas chambers in NC shelters - WNCT

Humane Society working to eliminate gas chambers in NC shelters

Posted: Updated:
RALEIGH, N.C. -

North Carolina is one of six states in the country that still uses gas chambers to euthanize animals.

The Humane Society has been working to phase them out for years, but gas chambers still exist in some animal shelters.

Cyndy Midgett, an animal activist, is looking to raise awareness of the issue by walking from the coast to Raleigh.

"I've got to do something. I can't just stand by and let it go," said Midgett.

She walked from her home in Manteo and arrived in Halifax Mall in downtown Raleigh Monday to protest the use of gas chambers.

Kim Alboum, the Director of the North Carolina Humane Society, said the use of gas is putting a horrible stigma on the state's shelters, which can overshadow the good work a shelter does.

"We have people that don't even live in our state criticizing our shelters and our shelter staff even in shelters that don't use the gas chambers simply because there are some shelters that do," says Alboum.

Out of the 100 counties in North Carolina, 11 shelters in Beaufort, Cleveland, Davidson, Gaston, Granville, Martin, Randolph, Rowan, Union, Wilkes and Wilson counties still use gas chambers to euthanize dogs and cats.

Alboum said two of these counties are close to eliminating gas chambers.

"This next step, it just seems logical. It's 2013 .There's no reason for us to have gas chambers in North Carolina," said Alboum.

Earlier this month, Alexander County's shelter dismantled its gas chamber for good. It was an emotional day for animal control officers there.

"For us, it's like that clouds gone, and we can continue to move forward," said Jennifer Pennell, an animal control officer at Alexander County's shelter.

The Humane Society gave a $10,000 grant to provide animal control officers with the proper training they need to use lethal injection instead. All shelters in North Carolina now have access to those drugs, though it doesn't change the reality of putting an animal down.

"I mean it still hurts you no matter how the animal has to be euthanized, it still hurts you on a personal level, but it's just more humane for you to actually have your hands on the animal to let him know there's somebody there that cares during that last moment ,"said Pennell. 

That is why animal officials urge people to adopt animals or have them spayed or neutered.

For more information about the Humane Society, or to find out ways you can help, click here.

Bianca Spinosa

Bianca Spinosa joined the WNCN news team in July 2013 after reporting for LEX18 in the Bluegrass State. More>>

  • North Carolina NewsMore>>

  • Marijuana group celebrates 4/20 with new Raleigh chapter

    Marijuana group celebrates 4/20 with new Raleigh chapter

    Sunday, April 20 2014 11:27 PM EDT2014-04-21 03:27:43 GMT
    On this twentieth day of April, 4/20, some people in Raleigh are pushing for changes to the state's marijuana laws.The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, or NORML, celebrated the unofficial weed holiday with some music in downtown Raleigh. The group re-opened a Raleigh chapter and it hopes to convince state lawmakers to follow the lead of Colorado and Washington in decriminalizing or even legalizing some pot possession.
    On this twentieth day of April, 4/20, some people in Raleigh are pushing for changes to the state's marijuana laws.The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, or NORML, celebrated the unofficial weed holiday with some music in downtown Raleigh. The group re-opened a Raleigh chapter and it hopes to convince state lawmakers to follow the lead of Colorado and Washington in decriminalizing or even legalizing some pot possession.
  • McCrory coal ash announcement miffs GOP lawmakers

    McCrory coal ash announcement miffs GOP lawmakers

    Sunday, April 20 2014 3:48 PM EDT2014-04-20 19:48:26 GMT
    Some lawmakers say they were surprised and miffed by fellow Republican Gov. Pat McCrory's announcement that he's seeking legislation to beef up government oversight of coal ash dumps.
    Some lawmakers say they were surprised and miffed by fellow Republican Gov. Pat McCrory's announcement that he's seeking legislation to beef up government oversight of coal ash dumps.
  • McIntyre's retirement opens door for GOP in NC 7th

    McIntyre's retirement opens door for GOP in NC 7th

    Sunday, April 20 2014 12:33 PM EDT2014-04-20 16:33:02 GMT
    Democratic Rep. Mike McIntyre will retire after nine terms representing North Carolina's 7th Congressional district.Democratic Rep. Mike McIntyre will retire after nine terms representing North Carolina's 7th Congressional district.
    With McIntyre announcing his retirement after nine terms representing North Carolina's 7th Congressional district, Rouzer is back on the ballo.    
    With McIntyre announcing his retirement after nine terms representing North Carolina's 7th Congressional district, Rouzer is back on the ballo.    
Powered by WorldNow

3221 South Evans Street
Greenville N.C. 27834

Telephone: 252.355.8500
Fax: 252.355.8568
Email: newsdesk@wnct.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.