BELMONT COUNTY, OHIO (WTRF) – Citizens upset over the number of animals being euthanized at the Belmont County Animal Shelter took their concerns to the county commission today. Many asked why volunteers are being banned and potential adopters are being turned away, while animals are being put down due to overcrowding.

“My question is, why are volunteers being denied?”

Ashley Barto, Flushing

A long-time donor to the county animal shelter now is upset with decisions by shelter staff, allowing no input from people who want to help.

“Who’s monitoring them? Because they’re not allowing volunteers in, there’s no outside entities let in. None of these people here want anything more than to help. To save the dogs. Why on earth would putting down animals be the solution.”

Melissa Karkowski, Upset about euthanasia of shelter animals

Commissioners said overcrowding is the problem.

“But we do need animals to be adopted. Simple fact is we are overcrowded as most are.”

J.P. Dutton, Belmont County Commissioner

But several people said potential adopters are being turned away. Ashley Barto claims to be one of those individuals.

A shelter spokesperson said many dogs with behavior problems wouldn’t be good candidates for adoption. A dog trainer offered to help with them, even saying she would go on calls with shelter employees.

“Now they are advertising themselves as a no-kill shelter. But yet. Do something. Advertise. You know Aaron Apitzch, great photographer, great writer. He and Jodi are banned from going there. He was getting the word out and these photos out.”

Bob Dombroski, St. Clairsville

In the end, there were no answers, but the group of volunteers said they’d be back.

One person said he was told that 28 cats were recently euthanized. A shelter spokesperson said that was not true.

Stay with 7NEWS for updates.