Texas woman awarded for brining animal shelter’s kill rate from 100 percent to 0


Kayla Denney was awarded the 2019 National Unsung Hero Award by Petco for helping reduce a Taft, Texas animal shelter’s kill rate from 100 percent to zero percent in one year.

That award comes with $35,000 to help improve the shelter.

The shelter was a mess, had no electricity and a limited budget and supplies when Denney quit her accounting job to take over.

“The animals looked sad, the building looked sad,” City Manager Denise Hitt said. “Kayla’s an unsung hero....She truly has a vision of where she wants the shelter to go and if you have a vision, you are going to have results.”

Denney’s official title is Animal Control Officer and her job was to try to make the dream of Taft’s shelter becoming no kill a reality. She immediately made connections with the community through her personal Facebook page. She rounded up volunteers and she had one rule: no negativity.

“Here in Taft they are really starting to see that I am not here to pickup their animals and take them away, I am here to make sure the animals is taken care of,” Denney said. “Every dog deserves a chance.”

Overall, Denney has saved 565 animals.