The Friends of the Animal Shelter – Aiken County (FOTAS) is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) (Tax ID #27-0609272), volunteer organization created in 2009 to supplement the resources of the Aiken County Animal Shelter in the care of approximately 4800 homeless and abandoned animals consigned to its care each year. FOTAS is wholly funded by private donations.

The mission of FOTAS is to support the Aiken County Animal Shelter by promoting animal welfare, responsible pet ownership, and the elimination of euthanasia of all adoptable animals.

Before FOTAS was established, the County’s live release rate was only 10% but we are happy to say last year, 2016 year end status, it was 72% as a result of the efforts of FOTAS and its volunteers. Despite this improvement, 72% is still unacceptably low. FOTAS will continue its efforts to improve that number and fulfill its mission to never have to euthanize another adoptable animal.

2016 Aiken County Animal Shelter
Total Dogs and Cats Received = 4880
Total Dogs and Cats Re-homed = 3112
Total Dogs and Cats Euthanized = 1768
Live Release Rate = 71.74%


Become a Volunteer

Our volunteers are the lifeblood of our organization. Through their efforts, FOTAS and the County have saved the lives of more animals than any time in the shelter’s past. Our volunteers truly make a difference. Call us today at 803-514-4313—we will find a place where your love and efforts will save even more animals in the future.

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Developed a public/private partnership with the County for the purpose of building a new shelter facility that met basic standards of responsible and humane care, which opened in March 2014.

Funded the architectural and functional design plans of the new shelter.

Funded the needed equipment, kennels and stainless steel cage banks and other equipment in the new shelter.

Funded a needed Handy House for pet food storage at the shelter.

Funded landscaping and irrigation system on the new shelter site.

Developed an extensive volunteer program to augment the County staff and provide daily human interaction with the animals at the shelter to properly socialize them and therefore increase their adoptability.

Funded the cats adoption house in which adoptable cats are able to freely roam to an outside fenced-in play yard or inside to a climate-controlled building.


Developed a foster program for animals and their offspring until the pups/kittens are weaned and for dogs/cats in need of foster before being transferred to a no-kill shelter in other parts of the country.

Established a transfer program to “no kill” shelters all over the country and funds incurred transport expenses.

Initiated and supplements an Aiken County spay/neuter voucher financial assistance program for citizens in need of fixing their pets and community cats with FOTAS’ Fix-a-PET.

Funded fenced-in exercise yard, supplies pet food and care items for shelter animals, and provides supplemental medicine as well as outside vet clinic care when needed.

Purchased a needed shelter FOTAS transport van for bringing shelter adoptable animals to off-site adoption events.

Purchased two cat condos to house adoptable felines in the Shelter lobby and purchased a grooming/ wash tub for intake area and funded the installation of hot water.

Supplemented the music system for the adoption pods.