The Austin Animal Services Office (ASO) has received a new record of 97.9 percent lives saved in 2017, breaking last year's record-breaking number of 96.4 percent.

The Austin City Council passed a resolution in 2010 that required the Animal Services Office to maintain a lifesaving rate greater than 90 percent. Thanks to innovating programs, such as the large dog foster program, engagement-based animal protection and outreach, and support from the Austin community, ASO has surpassed 90 percent every year since 2011.

ASO has received other honorable accomplishments for 2017, including facilitating 8,093 adoptions, returning 3,363 pets to their owners and transferring 4,070 animals to rescue groups.

ASO programs aim to encourage conversations around animal-related needs to provide access to microchipping, sterilization and vaccinations and resources such as food, proper housing and beds to families in need.

“We are so grateful to our community for stepping up year-after-year to help us save lives” said Lee Ann Shenefiel, interim chief animal services officer. “It’s truly a group effort to be the largest no-kill community in the nation, and we’re looking forward to more record-breaking years ahead.”