News Blog

** 1-13-21 UPDATE ** Coronavirus Information

Due to Covid 19 – an appointment and adoption application will be required to visit or adopt.

Please call our office at 574-848-4225 to schedule an appointment or for more information.
Click to learn more about current Covid-19 procedures

As the number of cases continue to increase, we have increased our restrictions appropriately to maintain a safe zone for our staff as they provide care for the animals at HSEC.

Lost or Found a Pet – Please call us asap at 574-848-4225 to file a report. If you are missing a pet, visit to see the lost pets currently residing at HSEC. Check our found animal page frequently, we have stray animals coming to us continually, the web page updates occur frequently throughout the day, please check back if you do not see your animal at first.

Facebook has numerous lost animal and neighborhood pages that allow posting of your lost or found pet, please use these pages to help spread the word of lost or found pets. Many animals can make it home without a trip to HSEC.

Stray Animals and Owner Surrenders – At this time we are accepting stray dogs found in our community. We are currently not accepting owner surrendered dogs and cats or stray uninjured cats, a waiting list is available for stray cats.

If you have found an animal and can care for that animal until the owner is found, it is greatly appreciated to allow us space in the shelter, food and litter items can be provided, we do ask that you notify us with a found animal report.

Visiting HSEC – To reduce possible virus exposure for all, we are keeping our doors locked during business hours. Before visiting HSEC, please call our office for assistance at 574-848-4225. Much assistance can be provided over the phone. If in person assistance is needed, upon arrival, please call our office for building access.

Adoptions by Appointment – We are currently completing adoptions by appointment only. For the safety of all, we are not allowing visitors in our adoption center currently.

Our adoption animals can be visited on our virtual website at

Adoption applications can be filled out online at

All visitors are required to wear masks and practice 6 feet social distancing.

General Business Hours:  Monday – Friday 9:00 am– 5:00 pm & Saturday 9:00 am – 4:00 pm.

Adoption Appointment Hours: Monday – Friday 11:00 am – 4:00 pm & Saturday 11:00 am-3:00 pm.
Currently, we ask for one person from the family meet the animal before adoption and complete the adoption process.

We are not renting traps or scheduling microchip appointments.

We are not accepting any items for our Red Barn Resale Shop, towels or blankets at this time. We appreciate pet food donations and cleaning supplies.

Food Assistance – We are providing pet food assistance to those in need, please call us for information.

Volunteers – We miss our volunteers but currently request they stay home and safe. New volunteer training will resume as soon as possible. Inquiries about volunteering can be directed to [email protected]

Red Barn Resale Shop – For safety of all, the Red Barn will remain closed into 2021. We are unable to accept donations of used items currently. We miss our Red Barn community and want their safety to come first.

Events, Activities and Meetings – All meetings, events and activities are currently on hold.

Faced with fewer adoptions and less access to the public, our animals need YOU more than ever!  Visit our website, meet our adoption animals. Ready to adopt? An application can be filled out online before you come to the shelter.

Delays – To help prevent virus spread we are limiting the number of HSEC staff on site, we apologize in advance for any delays but our goal is to keep our animals, staff and community safe and healthy.


Rehoming Your Pet

No one wants to think about having to rehome their pet. Life can change quickly and sometimes this is a tough decision an owner has to make. Here is some information and options available for those facing this situation.

Before you release your animal to the shelter, ensure that this is truly the decision you want to make and no other options are available.  You may have other friends or relatives who would want to continue to provide a loving home for your animal.

Adopt a Pet and the Petco Foundation have created a Rehome program. You can visit the website at to learn more. Through their website, they will assist you in creating a profile for your pet and also assist in the process of finding the best home available for that pet.

After having exhausted all other efforts, you will need to contact the Humane Society at 574-848-4225 to set up an appointment to release your animal.  This allows the shelter appropriate time to accommodate animals coming in other than strays.  We accept animals only from Elkhart County (excluding Nappanee City which is serviced by another animal welfare agency).

On the day your release your animal, you will need to bring your driver’s license or valid ID to confirm you are a resident of Elkhart County.  Also, any vet records you have which provides valuable information about your animal’s vaccinations or medical history are very helpful.

You will complete an owner release form, which will ask for information about the animal that may help us find a new family.  A fee will be assessed for release of the animal and will vary depending on whether or not the animal has aggression issues, has bitten or is extremely ill.

Once you release your pet to us, it is final.  No further information will be provided to you or anyone else regarding the status of the animal.  Upon release, the Humane Society has the right to determine the appropriate disposition of the animal. 

Not all animals admitted to the shelter are considered adoptable.  During the spring and summer months, the shelter admits over 500 to 600+ animals per month.  Some animals may be deemed adoptable and selected for adoption; some may go to other collaborating animal welfare and rescue agencies; some may be sent to foster locations until they can be adopted; and some may not be deemed suitable for adoption and may have to be euthanized.

Every situation is different, for more information, we encourage you to contact our staff directly at 574-848-4225.

Cruelty and Neglect Responses


Cruelty/Neglect Responses


The Humane Society of Elkhart County appreciates when the public provides information which allows law enforcement and the Humane Society to address potential cruelty/neglect.  However, due to local and state statues, the investigative process must follow specific guidelines to ensure that appropriate steps are taken to preserve the integrity of a potential case.  Here are reminder tips that will help make the Humane Society and law enforcement’s jobs effective:


  1. Call the Humane Society and/or law enforcement to report suspected abuse or neglect providing details that you have seen as an eye witness. Hearsay or second-hand information is not acceptable.  Individual citizens and the general public do not have the authority to make any assessments or make contacts beyond authorized agencies — law enforcement and the Humane Society.
  2. Provide answers to questions from law enforcement of the Humane Society regarding location, nature of the abuse or neglect and your personal name and phone number in order that they may speak with you further as needed. (This information is confidential and not shared with the suspect.)
  3. If you are onsite, for your safety and the safety and well-being of the animals, respect the work of Humane Society and law enforcement officers and do not interfere as they are dealing with the animals.
  4. Understand that posting any information on social media or spreading of information which has yet to be confirmed or denied may jeopardize the investigative process and destroy the integrity of the case.
  5. The Humane Society’s main responsibilities include helping the animals in question and working in cooperation with law enforcement. No information will be provided during the investigative process other than such information as may be allowed by law enforcement.
  6. As for the future disposition of case animals, a full assessment will be conducted by the Humane Society and the Humane Society. In accordance with all legal guidelines, the Humane Society then has the authority to make determination on behalf of animals and what is best for the animals in question.