McDuffie County Departments

Animal Shelter

The Thomson-McDuffie County Animal Shelter is a not-for-profit organization committed to the compassionate care and protection of animals. Our purpose is to give sanctuary to abandoned, abused, and neglected animals, provide education to the public on responsible and humane pet ownership, encourage the public to spay and neuter their pets and encourage adoptions of those animals placed in our care. We serve the citizens of McDuffie County by upholding the law as it relates to the protection of its people and animals. We are a fully tax exempt 501(c)3 charitable organization chartered by the IRS.

Thomson-McDuffie County Animal Shelter
802 WhiteOak Road,
Thomson, Georgia 30824
Phone: (706) 595-0463 Fax: (706) 595-2117

If no one answers when you call the Shelter, please leave a message and your call will be returned. If you have an emergency due to an aggressive animal or an attack, please call the numbers listed for emergencies: Emergency: 911 or (706) 595-2145


The Shelters Mission Statement

To provide quality customer service in the daily operation of the Shelter and to provide the proper care for all of the animals that are housed in the Shelter. To adopt the pets out to a loving and nurturing home that will provide a better life for the pets.

Adoption Policy

  • Anyone wishing to adopt an animal must go through a screening process to make sure every effort is made to match the family and animal who may be right for each other. You should also have landlord information available and written permission from the landlord allowing the pet to be allowed at his or her property and notification the pet will be properly housed and maintained. If you pick an animal that has not yet been altered/spayed or neutered, you will have to schedule within 5 days of adoption surgery, and provide document of proof to the Shelter of the surgery.
  • McDuffie County has the right to deny any adoption of pets for any reason.

Consider Adopting an Adult Cat or Dog

  • Puppies and kittens are fun and cute but they are usually a lot more work to care for than an adult animal. Also, they mature quickly, often in a few short months. Here are a few positives about adopting adult animals:
  • Puppies and kittens will need house-breaking. Many adult animals are already house-broken.
  • Greater selection: Most shelters have more adult animals in a wide variety of breeds and personalities.
  • Health costs: Adult animals are less delicate and are able to ward off sickness better. They have often been vaccinated and even spayed/neutered.
  • Energy: Puppies and kittens are usually more destructive and energetic than adults. In today's busy households, an older, calmer animal may be less disruptive of your schedule.
  • Attitude: It's just not true that you can't teach an old dog (or cat) new tricks. In fact, older animals have usually been taught at least the basic rules and commands, and maybe a few special tricks they'd just love to share with a new family.


It is the responsibility of the Shelter Manager and/or personnel to receive and address nuisance complaints, provide information and to assist Law Enforcement on bite cases, cruelty to animal complaints or investigations, assist the Health Department Animal Control Officer with information regarding bite cases, and to provide any other information that is needed to assist with any complaints, to promote the animal adoption program, and to provide adequate care to the animals at the shelter.

The Thomson-McDuffie County Animal Shelter provides these services:

  • Take in stray, abandoned, lost and injured animals, and to provide care to the animals until they find a new home.
  • Provides a Pet Safety/ Adopt -A-Pet Class to the schools, daycares, girl/boy scouts, or any other organization that request the services.
  • Companion Day at the Nursing Home provided by the Shelter adopted pets.
  • Pet Adoptions
  • Provide traps if available to capture stray/aggressive animals
  • Response to cruelty complaints
  • Enforcement and/or assist in the enforcement of the State and City/County's Animal Control ordinances
  • Picks up injured animals, aggressive animals when dispatched if available
  • Quarantine or provide information on the animals quarantine requirement after someone has been bitten.

These are just a few of the services that are provided. If you should have any questions in regards to these services, please feel free to contact the Shelter.

Common Terms Associated with Animal Shelters

If you are looking for a pet, skip the pet store and head over to an animal shelter. Before looking for your new dog or cat there are some animal shelter terms that you should become familiar with.

Animal Rescue or Shelter – To take in strays, abandoned, injured or lost animals and provide the care they need until they are placed in a loving home and to help in the fight against pet cruelty and to assist with the enforcement when required.

Adopt - To take care of an animal as one's own. Animal shelters allow people to adopt puppies and kittens for little to no cost.

Stray - A pet that roams or wanders without a definite home. Dogs and cats become strays after being abandoned by their original owners, or lost.

Pound - A facility where stray animals can wind up after being found on the street, rescued or given up by their owners. Foster homes are used at times for these animals so that they do not have to be put to sleep or until they are ready for adoption.

Breeding - Reproducing offspring. People should have their pets neutered or spayed to avoid accidental breeding and unwanted offspring. This is the main cause of strays that is unfair to the pets.

Abuse - Pet rescuers save dogs and cats from abusive situations and owners. They will often rescue them when an owner has been abusive, hurtful and neglectful to an animal. Animal abuse is prevalent in puppy mills and when pets are allowed to keep having unwanted litters, and it is imperative that these puppies and kittens be rescued and sent to a loving home.

What happens if my pet is brought to the Shelter?
What does it cost to reclaim my pet from the Shelter?
Do I have to have my pet spayed or neutered?
If I witness what I believe to be an act of animal cruelty, who do I call?
What does it cost to bring an animal to the shelter?
If my pet is missing, could it be at the Animal Shelter?
Can my pet be micro chipped at the Animal Shelter?

What happens if my pet is brought to the Shelter?

If your pet is not readily identifiable with either a tag or chip or collar with identification, your pet will be held at the shelter monitored and observed for health and behavioral issues to verify if the pet is adoptable, which is required by the State and City/County regulations before a pet is adopted. If your pet is identifiable, the Shelter will make every effort to contact you regarding your pet, if the owner cannot be contacted the pet will be placed for adoption. Reclaim fees apply in each situation prior to reclaiming your pet. Unclaimed pets become the property of the Shelter.

What does it cost to reclaim my pet from the Shelter?

Pet owners are charged an initial impound fee of $40.00, plus an additional $5.00 Boarding fee per day is charged for each day of impound after the initial twenty-four hours of arrival at the Shelter. EVERY pet and /or reclaimed pet is required by Georgia law to have a current Rabies Shot. If the pet is kept over 24 hours at the shelter and the pet does not have a tag providing it has been vaccinated against Rabies a current Rabies Shot will be administered and the Pet owner/owners shall be charged an additional $ 10.00 fee for the Rabies Shot.

Do I have to have my pet spayed or neutered?

Spaying or neutering is not required for reclaimed pets, although the Shelter encourages responsible sterilization of pets to prevent unwanted litters. Spay and neuter is an answer for stopping millions of wonderful animals from being put to sleep every year.

If I witness what I believe to be an act of animal cruelty, and dog fighting who do I call?

The Shelter encourages the public to IMMEDIATELY report acts of animal cruelty, dog fighting by calling the City Police, Sheriff’s Department or the Shelter. You may also file complaints of neglect to the Shelter. Messages or calls of this nature will be investigated as soon as possible.

What does it cost to bring an animal to the shelter?

There is no fee to surrender an animal to the shelter; however you must be a McDuffie County resident. The animal shelter receives unwanted animals and strays from 4:00 pm until 6:00 pm, Monday through Thursday. To drop off on Friday you must call in advance Monday - Thursday to drop off on Friday.

If my pet is missing, could it be at the Animal Shelter?

If your pet is missing, it is important that you contact the Animal Shelter as soon as possible so that a missing pet report can be completed and shelter staff can be notified to look for your pet. It is also important that you contact any Veterinarian Clinics to check to see if the pet has been surrendered to them. Please remember that it is the responsibility of the pet owner to search for their missing pet; however, the Shelter will do everything possible to assist you in doing so.

Can my pet be micro chipped at the Shelter?

No! Please be advised that micro-chipped pets cannot be tracked in “real time” (similar to GPS) and must be scanned by a Veterinarian or Animal Shelter upon entering either facility which is required by State Law. Statistics show that micro-chipped pets have a very high percentage of being returned home safely. Currently over 7,000,000 pets in the United States have been micro-chipped.

Gail Newsome

Phone: (706) 595-0463

802 WhiteOak Road,
Thomson, Georgia 30824

Shelter Hours:
Mon-Fri 4:00 to 6:00 pm

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