‘We are entirely reliant on our community’: Hamilton Co. Humane Society animal shelter over capacity

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FISHERS — Despite being a brand-new facility, the Hamilton County Humane Society’s animal shelter is full.

The shelter, which opened in April, is no-kill – so the animals who temporarily call it home aren’t at risk of being euthanized. However, due to the sheer number of animals, the attention and individualized care each will receive is at risk.

There is something you can do to help ease the burden of an overcapacity shelter – which is of course to adopt or foster. 

Shiloh is a one-eyed pitbull terrier mix. She’s lived in the Hamilton County Humane Society’s shelter for a few months… but if you ask Senior Communications Manager Megan Davis that’s a few months too long. 

“She is one of the most incredible dogs. She’s incredibly playful,” Davis said. “She loves to play with toys, and she loves humans.”

Curled up with her favorite blanket, Shiloh is just one of the hundreds of animals up for adoption here, not only is the shelter full… it’s overcapacity at the moment. 

“Capacity in this building is 350 animals which is almost double from our old building. But right now, we have 420 animals currently in our care,” Davis said. “We’ve relied heavily on our foster network, to pull this off, these amazing individuals and families who are able to come to our building and take animals home whether they’re sick or recovering from surgery – need a stress break or because we’re full like today.”

420 animals all waiting, counting on you to walk past their gleaming glass gates. 

“That’s something that in our old facility, you know, we had those steel caged bars on the front of our kennels and here it’s all glass,” Davis said. “So, they’re really getting to interact with people which is a huge difference.”

For all the new shelter offers – it is still stressful for the animals, especially when overcrowded. It’s loud and made to be a temporary home. 

“As amazing as this building is, some animals just don’t thrive here. They’re very stressed out. And seeing them here, that’s not always their true personalities,” Davis said. “Give them some time. Come here and meet the animals that you’re interested in and give them a couple weeks in your home. To see adopters and families walk through these kennels and Catteries and watch them interact with these animals… it’s not only the highlight for us but also the highlight to those animals.”

Animals like Mia, a cat who was adopted by sixteen-year-old Abigail Phillips Thursday afternoon. 

“As soon as they opened the box she just jumped out and was running around the room and she was super playful so, that’s what made me want her,” Phillips said. “We came in and pretty much right away they just let us go and look at all the cats, they had four different rooms and we just, they let us roam around and look at all of them and then they let us pick a few that we wanted to meet, put us in a room with them and just got to play with them a little bit and it was really fun.”

If you give any one of the hundreds of animals inside a chance… it’s likely, you’ll wind up in a similar situation.

“There’s so many incredible animals in this building right now… we guarantee that we’ll be able to find the right one for you and help you find your new furry family member,” Davis said. “Adopting is so important to these animals. It means a second chance to live, love, and be loved which is what we’re all about here.”

If you’re interested in adopting any of the animals currently residing in the shelter you can see them all, fill out an application or schedule a visit on their website

Saturday, July 31st, the shelter will host their 13th annual Wine, Wags & Whiskers event from 6-9 p.m. at the Embassy Suites in Noblesville to help raise money for the Humane Society. 

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