Incorporated in 1952 as Sarasota’s first nonprofit animal welfare organization, the Humane Society of Sarasota County (HSSC) has grown to be the area’s premier no-kill shelter. A home is found for every adoptable pet in our care.
We take tremendous pride in being the area’s premier no-kill shelter, and with that comes the responsibility to lead by example. Our mission will always be focused on saving the lives of cats and dogs and enriching human lives along the way. Learn more about What We Do.
HSSC is a private, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization. We rely solely on contributions from individuals, organizations, and corporations. HSSC receives no federal funding, nor are we funded by any national humane organization. HSSC is the only animal welfare organization in Sarasota to earn the coveted 4-Star Rating from Charity Navigator, America’s premier independent charity evaluator.
In the fall of 1951, Donald Evans lost his dog. Eventually, the dog catcher caught the dog, but no one contacted Mr. Evans. His beloved dog was euthanized. Mr. Evans was so upset that he vowed to start a Humane Society to prevent this from happening to others. On the night of January 15, 1952, 70 people met at the Sunshine Kitchen and formed the new society.
The Humane Society of Sarasota County, Inc., was incorporated on February 8, 1952.
The Articles of Incorporation read, “The purposes of this corporation are: promoting the welfare of all animals in Sarasota County, Florida; caring for and finding homes for animals; encouraging kindness toward animals and assisting in the enforcement of all laws and ordinances for the protection of animals; operating an animal shelter for animals; and pursuing other humane objectives.”
HSSC’s original kennels held 48 dogs and the shelter had room for only 6 cats. Today, we are fortunate to have a total of 82 air-conditioned dog kennels that were newly built in 2010 and we can shelter up to 80 cats in three different rooms, one of which is a free-roaming room. In March 2009, HSSC officially became a no-kill shelter, meaning no adoptable pet is euthanized to make space for another. There are over 100 animals in the shelter on any given day. Every year, HSSC finds homes for over 1,700 dogs and cats.
As the area’s premier no-kill shelter, HSSC engages the hearts, hands, and minds of the community to help animals.
A community where all animals are cared for and loved.
We achieve our mission by providing compassionate care to our shelter pets, finding them permanent homes, and promoting responsible pet ownership in our community.
Close your eyes and imagine an animal who left its mark on your life. Maybe it was your childhood pet. Maybe it was an animal that helped you through a rough patch. Maybe it’s your current fur baby. Think about how much that animal meant to you and how it changed your story.
Now multiply your story by 2,700. That’s the number of cats and dogs that will be saved by the Humane Society of Sarasota County every year.
HSSC is in the final stages of construction on the largest renovation and expansion project in our nearly 70-year history. We are still on the exact same location on 15th Street, but we knocked down our cramped, outdated facility. In its place, we are building a 38,000ft2 shelter that will truly transform the landscape of animal care in our area.
Our new shelter is a dream on the brink of coming true, but we need your help. You can make this dream a reality and save 2,700 animals each year for decades to come.