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Record rate of animals brought to city shelter finding new homes

Five chihuahua-terrier puppies sit in a cage at Animal Care and Control, 2741 S. Western Ave. | File Photo.

A record rate of animals found new homes after staying at the only city-run animal shelter last year, city officials said Wednesday.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Animal Care and Control announced a 91-percent “Live Release Rate” last year, which is up from 89 percent in 2017 and 79 percent in 2016.

“Chicago Animal Care and Control is fulfilling its mission to provide quality, humane care to animals while ensuring the safety of our residents,” Emanuel said in a news release.

Animals are included in the live release rate if they leave the shelter at 2741 S. Wester Ave. alive — regardless of their condition — by being adopted, returned to an owner or transferred to another agency or shelter.

The increased rate comes as intake has also increased over the past two years, according to the city.

Of the 16,000 animals sheltered by CACC last year, 1,900 were adopted as pets, 9,000 were moved to rescue groups and more than 1,500 were returned to owners.

The live release rate does not include pets that were euthanized by owner request or found to be dead on arrival.

“I am thrilled that the life-saving work at Chicago Animal Care and Control continues to grow and improve,” CACC Executive Director Kelley Gandurski said in the statement. “The animals at CACC were once family pets, but through unfortunate circumstances, found their way to the shelter. It is our mission to find them a way home again.”