With more than 200 dogs and only 64 kennels, more space is needed. But until a new facility is built, changes can be made.
A recent report filed by National Animal Control Association listed 130 recommendations. Humane Society officials say among them, workers must immediately find a better way to wash cages.
"[The animals] are wet and not removed from cages, and they use bleach for disinfectant. That's not healthy for people or animals," says Peter MacQueen of the Eastern N.C. Humane Association.
Animal control workers say they have already made more than two dozen changes listed in the recommendations, and plan on making many more.
"We're trying to do everything we can to improve conditions in the crowded shelter as much as we can," says Sgt. Johnny Smith, an animal control officer. "We've just purchased some feed bowls for the animals to make it easier for them to get water."
Humane Society officials believe more can be done now to help the animals.
"They have to house cats in the euthanasia room which is not good, and we're hopeful that they'll remove cats from the euthanasia room as soon as possible," says MacQueen.
Cumberland County Animal Shelter board members are now working together with Humane Society officials to determine what other quick improvements can be made short of building a new facility.
Board members are already working to get money for a new facility in next year's county budget and hope to begin construction sometime in the next two years.