Every animal at the Wisconsin Humane Society has been adopted or fostered

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Obviously, no one is left unaffected by the current global crisis. It’s not just a matter of staying afloat, but finding ways to take care of ourselves as much as taking care of those in need. It’s a scary and uncertain time. Animal shelters across the country have been deemed essential businesses so they remain open, but dwindling donations and smaller staffs leave many with no way to care for their overcrowded facilities. Such was the case with the Wisconsin Humane Society, who faced some big decisions with 300+ pets to deal with and no resources. In a Hail Mary pass attempt, they put the plea out to the community to help house the animals… and it worked! In less than a week, 159 were adopted and 160 found fosters.

People are coming together in Wisconsin amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Less than a week after asking for help finding homes for the hundreds of animals in their care, the Wisconsin Humane Society — which found themselves in a “tough situation” amid the spread of the virus — announced that every single animal had either been adopted or fostered.

“Absolutely incredible. We’re near tears,” they wrote in an emotional Facebook post. “On March 15, we let our supporters know we needed help to get as many animals out of our shelters as possible so we could be ready for whatever challenges tomorrow throws at the communities we serve.”

“Despite the chaos and uncertainly of a global pandemic, you adopted 159 animals and took home 160 foster animals, all in just 5 days – and while three of our campuses were closed, no less!” they added. “Take a moment to let that sink in… 319 animals are snoozing on couches instead of sitting in kennels. We couldn’t possibly express how grateful we are.”

Although as of Friday, there were absolutely no animals up for adoption — which the humane society called “the most wonderful sight we could ever hope for at a time like this” — they noted that they would continue to receive animals in the coming days.

“You’ll see more listed as they arrive, but for now, we celebrate this tremendous bright spot during an exceedingly difficult time,” they continued. “We’re so grateful to our community for taking all of these changes in stride. We wish we could thank you all in person, but for now, we send our love virtually ❤ You. are. Amazing.”

[From People]

*Heart swells* The beauty of this is not just shelter pets finding homes, it’s all the comfort those folks will derive from those pets in these uncertain times. Wisconsin is a beautiful example, but this is happening across the country. Twin Cities Animal Humane Society in Minnesota also found homes for all its inhabitants right before they were forced to shut their doors. Riverside adopted over a hundred dogs and cats on a Tuesday afternoon. Furry Friends in Florida is encouraging seniors, cut off due to their high risk, to foster a companion animal during their self-isolation, which is a wonderful idea.

Celebrities are taking home Pandemic Pets (as they are being called) as well. Kaiser mentioned Camila Morrone and her foster pups. Antoni Porowski is fostering Neon while he social distances from humans. Kyle Chandler tried to foster a pup with his wife Kathryn, but they didn’t even make it to the door before they adopted Clive, who is now a forever Chandler.

Adoption is a big commitment. If you’ve been thinking about it, now’s the time. But, if you don’t know if you can commit to forever, that’s the beauty of fostering. First of all, you can get a feel of what parenting a pet is like, to see if it works for you. Plus, you get a Social Distancing Buddy and that Buddy gets all the belly-rubs and face-smooshes it craves. Fostering helps animals with socializing, which is a huge draw to get them adopted. So even if you can’t commit past quarantine, the moments you spend with your new fur-buddy will forever improve its life.

Photo credit: Twitter and Instagram

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29 Responses to “Every animal at the Wisconsin Humane Society has been adopted or fostered”

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  1. Ellen Olenska says:

    Best news of the day!

  2. grabbyhands says:

    Thank you for posting – I needed a story like this.

  3. Lisa says:


  4. Erinn says:

    This is so sweet. Our SPCA is actually shut down to anyone but the people caring for the animals. All adoptions are on hold. I can’t imagine how devastating that must feel for anyone who was in the process to adopt – knowing that you can’t even go see them.

    Another rescue I follow in the area had posted a week or so ago about how because of the borders closing to all but essential travel they won’t be able to save dogs from US kill shelters and bring them home. It broke my heart.

  5. Mina_Esq says:

    This warms my heart. For every Ron Johnson, there are ten wonderful people out that, who consider not only other humans but also vulnerable animals. Love, love, love!

  6. ChillyWilly says:

    This is so nice to see. Also, Coach Taylor! 😍

  7. Esmom says:

    Love this. It’s my dream to foster kittens, I follow a number of accounts on IG and am awed by the commitment and dedication of these volunteers. And endlessly entertained by the adorable kittehs.

  8. Sojaschnitzel says:

    I’ve been thinking for months about getting an elder cat. One that has less ambition of going out, because I don’t have a garden. I would loooove to do this but I have no idea who could take care of her or him when I need to travel. My parents live far away and I live outside of the city. None of my friends would take that trip daily to feed a catto.

    • Esmom says:

      Elder cats also have so much to offer. What about a neighbor kid or high schooler? I often see posts on my local FB chatter page from teens/college students looking to do errands like that.

    • Ellie says:

      Cat sitters who stop by daily are a great option and at least around here, not very expensive at all. We hired one we trusted while we went our honeymoon last year, and she was great with our somewhat sickly elderly cat who likes almost no one but us. 10/10 would hire again once I can travel again. Maybe any option for you so you can get that catto!

    • chicken tetrazzini! says:

      I bought an automatic feeder and then have used services like Rover and had friends pop by. Cat’s can go a little while on their own without constant supervision and it isn’t too expensive to have someone stop over once a day to visit the kitty

    • lucy2 says:

      I use a cat sitter when I’m away more than a night or 2. She comes once a day to take care of them, and also brings in the mail, checks the house, etc. It’s great.

      I hope you find a wonderful cat!

    • Onnit says:

      Elder cats are the BEST! I only have one cat at the moment, and she adopted me when she was between 4 and 6 (she had no home, and that was the estimated age given by the vet). Unfortunately, she is a bit neurotic, and was a horrible bully to my (now deceased) older female cat. I am thinking about getting a kitten ONLY because of her awful behavior, in the hopes that she will accept a young cat easier than a beautiful older kitty.

      • schmootc says:

        I had the grouchiest tabby in the world and he took to the kitten I brought home without much trouble. Do try to get a boy though – as you experienced, felines are matriarchal and sometimes two girls are unable to get along very well. If you introduce them correctly and slowly, you up your odds of success too – swap sites, have them eat at the same time with a door between, etc. (Sorry if I sound preachy, I volunteer at a shelter and it’s hard not to yammer about cats to anyone who will listen.)

      • lucy2 says:

        I hope you are able to adopt another!
        My previous cat was the same, she loved me but HATED everyone else, and hated other cats. She had to be an only cat her whole life.
        The two I have now are siblings and have so much fun together (when they aren’t fighting) but they get super freaked out by other cats too. A family member had their kitten here for like a day, and my two lost their sh!t.

    • Eda says:

      I can’t recommend an auto feeder more. I’ve used feeders from PetSafe for the last ten years and had no issues. It’s great if you’re a busy person, away for a weekend or even if you are home all the time, because either way, kitty gets fed predictably. It really lessens stress related to food and can help with weight management/special health conditions managed by diet. I have two seniors and they are very aware of when the feeder turns.

      I suggest interviewing a responsible teenager or licensed pet sitter so you have someone on hand when you need to leave for a few days. Also, having a companion animal for your pet is also helpful (cats are great in pairs :)).

  9. Charfromdarock says:

    Yay! I would by like the Chandlers, fostering would just be a route to adoption.

    Our SPCA is closed as well.

    I am not exaggerating when I say my dog is keeping me sane. He somehow knows this is a stressful time and is being extra cuddly.

    A bit challenging when working from home though because he wants up in arms all day. I had to set up a comfy chair with pillows in my home office. He Is content to be within paw’s reach.

  10. CidyKitty(CidySmiley) says:

    Sooooo amazing and sweet. There has been a lot of efforts in my town to get pets adopted or fostered.

    I love my two adoptees. I adopted two cats years ago now, they are the best social distancing buddies! Although I’m sure they are getting tired of me being home.

  11. Aang says:

    Same in my city. All dogs are adopted or in foster.

  12. chicken tetrazzini! says:

    My friend recently decided to foster while in isolation and failed on her first dog. Snuggled his way right into her heart forever. Fostering or adopting means some good can come out of this scary mess of a world

  13. lucy2 says:

    I love this so much.

    My shelter is still open, but it’s appointment only and they bring the dogs outside to meet people. They’ve had a lot of adoptions lately, and hopefully fostering too. I think there will be a ton of foster fails after this, especially with everyone being home so much.
    When I lost my 17 year old cat a few years ago, my house felt so empty. I thought it would take a while to be ready to adopt, but shortly after I was notified of a rescued litter of kittens and adopted 2. They are just the best thing, especially right now.

  14. Onnit says:

    Please spay and neuter! My world is so much better with pets, but it saddens me that so many people don’t care if they fill up the shelters.

    • schmootc says:

      That’s part of the crappiness of what’s going on right now – a lot of pets can’t be spayed/neutered because of restrictions on surgeries that aren’t essential. This year’s kitten season is going to be crazy. So yes, as soon as it’s possible where you are, get them spayed or neutered!

      • Christin says:

        My new little kitten (found hiding in my yard) was spayed last week. We had her appointment a few weeks. With how rapidly things are changing, I am not sure if my vet could have done it this week.

  15. Ponchorella says:

    What a great story in the age of CV! A win-win for adopters and adoptees.

  16. pottymouth pup says:

    This makes me happy but I am concerned about how committed families will remain to their new dogs if/when they start showing signs of separation anxiety when families are able to start venturing out and have to go back to work. I hope the shelter has enlisted the assistance of trainers to work with the families and prepare them for the possibility of separation anxiety due to the very unusual circumstances and provide phone/email support in the interim

  17. Laura says:

    Sigh. I really really want to adopt a pet I feel like we would help each other so much in this stressful time but I work in healthcare and everyday something new comes down the pipe and I’m afraid of what will happen tomorrow let alone a few weeks from now even if I foster I’m scared I won’t have the time a pet deserves.

  18. It's a dry heave says:

    Thank you so much, Hecate, for posting this story. It is so desperately needed right now.

    I was absolutely gutted to hear that the second largest no-kill shelter in my area was forced to close. I absolutely cannot stand how badly humans have failed animals (ie. spay/neuter), causing so many innocent defenseless creatures to suffer. It’s nice to see instances of so many people stepping in to help!

  19. Yeppers says:

    Beautiful story. Thanks, Hecate.