LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- Louisville's only open intake animal shelter did not have to euthanize any animals due to lack of time or space last year -- a first in the shelter's 52-year-history.

According to a news release from the office of Mayor Greg Fischer, Louisville Metro Animal Services is celebrating several improvements since 2016, including the no-kill statistic.

"Our city value of compassion absolutely extends to the animals that enrich our lives," Fischer said, in a statement. "That's why I'm so proud that Metro Animal Services has achieved a live release rate above 90 percent, thanks to the hard work of the LMAS team, their partners and volunteers."

"We want to celebrate the work they've done, completing a really dramatic and impressive turnaround," Fischer added.

According to the news release, the shelter had a 93 percent live release rate by the end of 2017. The mayor's office says it's the best live release rate in the shelter's history.

Additionally, the mayor's office says LMAS found homes for 909 more cats and dogs, compared to 2016 (3,131 vs. 2,232).

Fischer attributes many of the improvements to LMAS' new director, Ozzy Gibson.

"Since I got here, I've been impressed with the dedication of our team, partners and volunteers to the compassionate care of animal[s]," Gibson said, in a statement. "We're going to keep working hard, and we'll stay committed to coming up with new ideas that lead to good outcomes for animals."

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