Animal Control

The Animal Control program exists to protect the public’s health against the spread of rabies.  This is done through rabies vaccinations, impoundment and humane euthanasia.  Animal Control:

  • investigates all animal bites;
  • investigate all reports of injured animals;
  • investigate all reports of cruelty to animals;
  • and investigate all complaints related to animals which are a nuisance and/or dangerous

Animal Rescue

Beginning Monday, June 24th, 2013 Cleveland County Health Department’s Animal Control Unit will be overseeing the animal rescue program.  Below you’ll find the requirements to be a registered rescue group and an application.  If you are interested in being recognized as an animal rescue organization with Cleveland County Animal Control:

  • Please click on the rescue group application below
  • You will be directed, in a new window, to our online rescue organization application.  Please fill out this form, remembering to attach your 501(c)3 verification, and hit submit.
  • You can expect a response from Animal Control within 5 business days.

 Questions, concerns and/or comments regarding the rescue program or concerning any animal seen on the impoundment or Facebook page should be directed to  Please do not call the shelter, as these inquiries will only be handled electronically moving forward.

Fee Schedule


Annual Report

Monthly Reports

Positive Rabies Cases

*for older reports of Rabies incidents, please contact Animal Control at 704-481-9884.


Pet Lost and Found

Lost your pet? click here to view animals recently found within the county border or if you have found a pet, you can notify us by submitting a lost and found pet form. The shelter houses many different pets. To find out more about the animals available at the shelter, visit our Facebook page.


Cleveland County has experienced a tremendous increase in confirmed cases of rabies. Since June 1998, two hundred six (209) cases have been confirmed. Countywide awareness and preventive efforts have been ongoing. The Animal Control Staff, the Humane Society and veterinarians have worked diligently together to stop the spread of rabies. Prevention is the key to successfully stopping rabies from invading the domestic animal population. Rabies vaccination for domestic animals works!

One of our proven successful strategies is the Free Rabies Drive-Through Clinic.  Conducted 4 times annually Animal Control has averaged nearly 5000 free rabies vaccines given annually.

2013-2014 Free Rabies Vaccination Clinic Schedule
  • Saturday, September 21st, 2013: Burns High School 8-4
  • Saturday, November 2nd, 2013: Cleveland County Health Department, 8-4
  • Saturday, April 5th, 2014:  Crest High School, 8-1
  • Saturday, May 3rd, 2014:  Kings Mountain High School 8-1


New Shelter Hours:

Monday and Friday from 2p.m. to 4 p.m.
Tues, Wed, and Thurs. 12 pm – 4 pm
1609 Airport Road, Shelby NC 28150

To view any animals at the shelter please click on the Animal Control Facebook link to the left.  (This is a different page than the general health department Facebook page.)