Animal Sheltering 2010-12




Coffee Break

In your space, you told us how your organization makes its facilities more appealing to the public. Do you decorate your lobby? Deodorize your kennels? Disguise ugly parts of the building?


Rescued from Squalor

Even when faced with overwhelming evidence that the animals in their care are suffering, hoarders often cannot stop collecting more. Rooted in mental illness, hoarders’ behavior warrants compassion—but stopping them will often require prosecution. Through the lens of one hoarding seizure, we look at the phenomenon of hoarding, and explore ways that even smaller shelters can prepare to handle a major case.


Making Spay/Neuter an Inside Job

A program in Oklahoma provides a model for how subsidized spay/neuter can be made more widely available to low-income residents, through cooperative efforts with local veterinarians in private practice.


Rehab Project

If you were suddenly faced with caring for scores of filthy, frightened puppy mill dogs, what do you do? Where do you even begin? Some shelters would understandably freak out, but others around the country have years of experience dealing with this, and they’ve developed methods to rehabilitate and socialize these special pets, turning them into companion animals that people will line up to adopt.


Amazing Gracie

In her book Saving Gracie, journalist Carol Bradley traces the journey of one dog— initially known only as “No. 132”—from her sad origins at a puppy mill, to her seizure by caring humane officers, and ultimately into the loving arms of an adopter.


Whose Animal is it?

Animals are still considered property in every state in the country. But how do you know whether the person at your front desk is the animal’s legal owner? What documentation do you require in order to take in—and potentially adopt out—a surrendered animal? It’s worthwhile to consider your shelter’s procedures so you can head off potential problems.


Turning Fearful Cats Friendly

The more friendly shelter cats seem, the more likely it is that people will interact with them, which can lead to adoptions. But what about all the feral and fearful cats who don’t meet adoptability criteria and are less likely to find a home?


Bringing the Holidays Home

Christmas can be the loneliest day of the year for chained dogs, but a small group of officers at the Washington Humane Society have a holiday tradition of making sure these canines know they’re not forgotten.



  • Transport of dogs relieves pressure on two overwhelmed Louisiana shelters
  • Which volunteer management practices make for happy employees?
  • The tropics aren’t all sun and fun for animals, but local groups are lending a hand
  • After assisting with a major puppy mill raid, a longtime sheriff plans to switch to animal control
  • A stray relies on the kindness of strangers to find a better home
  • Community rolls up its sleeves (literally) to show support for local shelter