Note from the Editor

As Thanksgiving approaches, we wanted to take a moment and reflect on all that we are thankful for. On behalf of the HSoMC, we are thankful for our community, which includes our dedicated staff, committed Board of Directors, volunteers who never fail to show up, fosters who provide a temporary safe haven, adopters who are willing to take a chance, other rescues who partner with us, generous donors and sponsors...and the list goes on. Although we are comprised of different backgrounds, views, ages and educations, we ALL come together to promote the same goal: caring for the animals that we are privileged to serve. Earlier this month, we posted a “Thankful Challenge” on Facebook. Some of the responses are reprinted below. Seeing these animals in their own homes with loving adopters is our reward, and we thank all of you for helping the HSoMC fulfill this goal.

Getting the Lives They Deserve

In early November, our social media coordinator, Casey, started a “Thankful Challenge” on Facebook. We were overwhelmed and moved by the responses and wanted to share some of these with our readers. Due to space constraints, we cannot reprint all of them, so please visit our Facebook page to see all of these heartfelt responses!
Thankful for Kenobi: Submission from Kelsea (Adopter)
I am so thankful for my HSoMC dog, Kenobi (formerly Jazz, one of the Lebanon dogs). He has brought so much light into my life and helped me through the absolute darkest period in my life after the sudden passing of my father. Even after all he had been through in Lebanon, all of the abuse he had suffered, he is the gentlest, most caring and slightly eccentric soul I have ever met. I was able to get in touch with his foster mother from Lebanon and learned more about his history and the story of how he had been dragged behind a car and had both of his front legs broken. 

Even after all of this abuse, he is still able to give unconditional love to everyone that he meets. I am so thankful for Animals Lebanon and the HSoMC for working so hard and putting so much effort into saving these dogs who deserve a second chance. Nobi has been an absolute blessing not only to my husband and I, but to his sister, Bailey, and everyone else he meets. He gives me hope that anyone can move on from their negative experiences and continue to greet each day with a smile.
Thankful for Midnight: Submission from Lisa (Volunteer and Adopter)
Three years ago, I started volunteering at the Humane Society of Midland County as a dog photographer. I was so happy to have found the perfect volunteer position – one that allowed me to use my photography skills and also get my dog fix. I am allergic to most dogs, and therefore didn’t have one of my own at home. For other medical reasons, it was advised that I avoid allergy shots, and so, I came to accept that having my own dog wasn’t in the cards.
Volunteering at the HSoMC filled a huge void for me. I’d get to spend a little time with a variety of dogs and puppies, but I got to do my work outside, so this never bothered my allergies. This past May, I was looking at the list of incoming dogs, and saw that a 13-year-old toy poodle had just arrived. Something in me decided to take an extreme chance and see if this dog could work for my allergies. I took Midnight home on a trial foster basis. I was trying not to get too attached to him but failed miserably. He was the sweetest and most affectionate dog ever and bonded to me within hours. Most importantly, he didn’t bother my allergies! After two weeks, I officially adopted him, and he became our family’s first dog.

I highly recommend adopting a senior dog – they are so grateful and often still have a lot of life left to live. I am happy that I avoided potty and night training and can just enjoy a dog who already knows these skills. Senior dogs are often overlooked at shelters, and this makes me incredibly sad. You can see in their eyes that they just want a soft couch and a loving place to call home in their retirement years. I am so thankful for my new-to-me older dog, Midnight. He has filled a void in me that I’d carried around for a very long time. I’m also thankful for my volunteer position at the HSoMC.
Thankful for Griz: Submission from Melissa (Adopter)
I adopted Griz (known as Turnip at the shelter) in 2016 at the end of my freshman year of college when he was nine years old. When I got him, I was doing really poorly in school due to my mental health. Griz serves as my emotional support animal and has done wonders for my mental health. I’m about to graduate from university with a 3.3 GPA! We really needed each other. He desperately needed to lose weight, and I needed the support mentally. He’s me in dog form, which was funny to find in a dog I didn’t raise. Thank you HSoMC for letting me find my best friend!
Thankful for Nova and Changed Views on Pitties: Submission from Brianna (Adopter)
I’m most thankful for my rescue from the HSoMC, my sweet Nova. She’s a two-year-old pit bull that has completely stolen my heart. So many people are skeptical about pit bulls and usually look past them in the kennels, but let me tell you, Nova is the perfect example of what a pit bull truly is. She’s sweet, gentle, such a people person, a snuggle machine, a loyal companion and the most loving dog I’ve ever met. Nova has changed my family’s views on pit bulls because of how gentle she is. She loves every single person she meets, as well as other dogs. I’m so thankful, and every day she gets all the love and treats she deserves. Thank you for allowing me to adopt her. Best decision of my life.
Thankful for Ed: Submission from Beth (Board Member and Adopter)
I’m thankful for senior dogs and that they get a second chance at the HSoMC. Senior dogs are typically well trained, well behaved, mild mannered and incredibly loving. I adopted Ed, a senior beagle, in February 2019, and I am so thankful I get to give a loving home to such a special dog.
Thankful for Midland High and Northeast Wrestling Teams: Submission from All of Us at the HSoMC
We are thankful for the Midland High and Northeast Wrestling Teams for donating their time and muscles to help organize, haul and stack our storage unit. THEN, in 15 minutes, they completely unloaded a van that had every inch packed with four pallets of food and other items. Go Chemics and Vikings!
Thankful for Meatball: Submission from Chantal (Staff Member and Adopter)
On a night when most people in Midland were safe in their homes, several scared dogs were left outside of our building alone during a terrible thunderstorm! Abandoned, we found the dogs the next morning, scared and unsure. Meatball was one of those dogs (pictured in the middle). New staff member Chantal was immediately drawn to him and knew she had to save him. As soon as his stray hold was complete, she took him home, and she is very thankful for how well he fits into their home! He's obviously living his best life now, and we couldn't be happier for him!
Thankful for Maribelle: Submission from Carol (Adopter)
1. I'm thankful for the opportunity I had to make Maribelle's last two years on earth her best years when I adopted her.
2. I'm thankful that I was able to shower her with as much love and attention as possible before I had to make the decision to let her go.
3. I'm thankful that I was able to hold her in my lap and tell her how much I loved her as she crossed over the rainbow bridge.
Thankful for Maija & Diesel: Submission from Kayla (Adopter)
I’m thankful for these two goofs. They have brought so much joy and love into our home. They are constantly changing people's opinions on the bully breeds! Everyone that comes in contact with them loves them. We rescued Maija (Poombette) in 2013 and Diesel (Mr. Pibbles) in 2016. They like to travel, go for long walks, enjoy lazy days and cuddle under the blankets when it’s snowy. We will be welcoming foster children into our home in the next few weeks, and I know for a fact these two will help these kids overcome fears, past and present trauma and show them loyalty and never-ending love. So thankful to be blessed with these wonderful babies.

Why the HSoMC Does Not Recommend Feline Declawing

The Humane Society of the United States, the American Veterinary Medical Association and the American Association of Feline Practitioners all advise against declawing. Some believe that using laser surgery is acceptable, but we have seen cats with severe burns as a result. The following is an excerpt from the Humane Society of the United States describing declawing:
“Too often, people think that declawing is a simple surgery that removes a cat's nails – the equivalent of having your fingernails trimmed. Sadly, this is far from the truth. Declawing traditionally involves the amputation of the last bone of each toe. If performed on a human being, it would be like cutting off each finger at the last knuckle. It is an unnecessary surgery that provides no medical benefit to the cat. Educated pet parents can easily train their cats to use their claws in a manner that allows everyone in the household to live together happily. Declawing your cat can cause a number of health and behavioral concerns including not using the litterbox, pain and severe arthritis in the feet, and aggressive behavior.” 
To read the full article, click here
If you follow the HSoMC on social media, you may have recently seen cats who were surrendered due to negative behaviors, including the aggression and hygiene issues mentioned above. Fortunately, after surgical correction, these cats had a 180-degree personality change. No longer in pain, they are now loving pets in their adoptive homes. If you have a cat that is scratching, please consider the alternatives such as Soft Paws claw covers, regular nail trims and plenty of surfaces for your cat to scratch (cardboard scratchers are best!). If you have questions, please contact your veterinarian or give us a call. Thank you! 
Princess and Kitsey are two cats whose lives changed for the better after surgery to relieve their pain from declawing.

HSoMC Welcomes Dogs from Texas

Once again, the HSoMC had the opportunity to help our friends at the Fort Worth Animal Shelter by taking 15 of their dogs. These dogs arrived the morning of November 21 and as of the publication of this article, 13 of the 15 have been adopted. Below are some pre-adoption photos. 
NOTE: Helping animals from outside of Midland County does not impact our ability to help animals locally. Many of these dogs are already spayed/neutered, heartworm tested/treated and current on their vaccinations. Additionally, by taking these dogs, we enable the other shelter to avoid euthanasia and create capacity so that they can save other displaced dogs. Finally, the HSoMC has one of the highest adoption rates in the state, so these dogs, many of whom have been in the transferring shelter for long periods of time, find homes within a week of arrival in Midland.

REMINDER: Bring Animals Inside During Extreme Weather

The Animal Legal Defense Fund shares these safety tips for pets in the event of extreme weather.
  • Don't leave companion animals outdoors when temperatures drop. If it’s too cold for you, it’s too cold for them! 
  • Shivering, a weak pulse, dilated pupils, stupor and unconsciousness are signs of hypothermia.
  • If you see something, say something by contacting local law enforcement with details including the time and location of suspected animal abuse or neglect. 
Adoptable Dog: Bitsy
Other dogs have come and been adopted, but Bitsy is still waiting. She came to the HSoMC from downstate with her young puppies. We were able to place her in a calm and stable foster home where she was able to properly care for her puppies and thrive. Her puppies have been adopted but she is still looking for a home. She is a two- to three-year-old Shepherd mix who is housebroken and crate trained. She is very intelligent and will need an active home that will keep her busy. However, she is reactive on leash to other dogs and should meet any other dogs prior to adoption. As with all HSoMC dogs, she is spayed, heartworm tested, current of vaccinations and microchipped. There is no adoption fee since she has been sponsored by Bickford Senior Living. In the right home, she will be an awesome companion. Please consider bringing Bitsy into your home and heart by giving her the life she deserves.
Adoptable Dog: Bo
November is National Adopt a Senior Pet Month – and our sweet friend Bo is a nine-year-old Staffordshire Bull Terrier mix looking for his forever home! This loving boy will need a fenced-in yard or someone to walk him on a leash for bathroom breaks. Bo needs a home without cats, but he can live with other dogs. He also needs to meet the other dogs in the home prior to adoption and will do best with a female canine companion. Handsome Bo is neutered, vaccinated, heartworm tested and microchipped. Do you want to make Bo part of your family?  He has been sponsored and is adoptable for no fee to an approved home!  Fill out an application today at

AmazonSmiles and the HSoMC Benefits

As the holidays approach, please consider using AmazonSmile for your purchases. It costs you nothing but can directly benefit the HSoMC.
Please consider listing the HSoMC by visiting the HSoMC website under “DONATE,” and scroll down to the Section “Shop for a Cause.” Click on the link under AmazonSmile. When making purchases from Amazon in the future, just use the URL instead of the normal one. That’s it! Now, 0.5% of your purchases will automatically benefit the HSoMC. 
Note: Purchases made through the mobile application do not go to the charity.  Therefore, you need to use the web browser and the web address for the donation to occur.

Upcoming Events

Black Furday
Friday, November 29
The Humane Society of Midland County
Join us at the HSoMC for one of our biggest adoption events of the year! Black Friday shopping at its best – just replace shopping with adopting!
Early Bird Special: 12:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m.: No fee on all cats and kittens; all dog adoptions - $50 fee.
3:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m.: ALL adoption fees – half off!
All HSoMC animals are spayed/neutered, vaccinated, viral tested and microchipped. Potential adopters are encouraged to arrive early. No animals will be held for any reason during this event. Applications can be filled out on site or ahead of time at (please put Black Furday in the “name” section of the application).
The Tail-End Event – Donations
November 18-December 21
The Humane Society of Midland County
During the “tail-end” of the year we are teaming up to fill up a truck with some of the Humane Society’s most needed supplies, including gift cards (Meijer, Walmart and Soldan’s), wet food, paper towels, hand sanitizer, bleach, cleaning supplies and trash bags. Midland Ford Lincoln will also make a donation for every vehicle sold during this time!
The Tail-End Event – Adoptions 
Friday, December 13 – 2:00-6:00 p.m.
Saturday, December 14 – 12:00-4:00 p.m.
Midland Ford Lincoln Dealership
In the second part of our year-end event, our adoptable pets will be at the Midland Ford Lincoln dealership. Come out to see them and join Santa for a photo shoot. Dress up your pets for the holidays and bring them by for some festive fun!
Empty the Shelters 
December 13-14
11:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.
The Humane Society of Midland County
Once again, we are teaming up with the BISSELL Pet Foundation for a holiday “Empty the Shelters” event! Will you help make forever homes a reality for our shelter pets? Older cats are free and dogs and kittens are $25. We encourage you to fill out an application before the event.
2020 HSoMC Elections 
February 3, 2020
6:30 p.m.-7:00 p.m.
American Legion Hall
5111 Hedgewood Drive
Midland, MI 48640
Elections to the HSoMC Board of Directors will be held on February 3, 2020. There will be a short meet and greet session with the candidates starting at 6:00 p.m. More information will follow in the December newsletter. If you are interested in becoming a board member candidate for the upcoming election please submit your letter of interest to Julie Eddy, at by January 6, 2020. In order to be eligible to vote in board elections you must have your membership dues for 2020 paid by January 31, 2020. Please click here for more information.

Board Members and Officers

President, Nikki Rayce
Vice President, Lynn Looby
Treasurer, Ben Dollard
Secretary, Beth Scoles
Karen Brines, Director
Dana Courtine, Director
Jesse Donahue, Director
Julie Eddy, Director
Eric Soll, Director
Wendy Traschen, Director
We provide temporary shelter and care for displaced animals, promote responsible pet care, and enrich our community through animals.
All animals in our community have safe and loving homes.

Volunteer Opportunities

Volunteers are always needed within the shelter! If you would like to help, we are in need of volunteers to assist with dog walking, cleaning cat cages, general housekeeping and fostering pets in need. If you would like to find out more, please email
For more information or to become a volunteer or donate, visit our website at or our Facebook page at
In 2018, the HSoMC placed over 2,000 animals. That equates to more than five animals per day including holidays and weekends! If you would like to become a member, please complete and submit our membership form.
Thank you to all of our Ties and Tails Gala sponsors and supporters including our partnership level sponsors below.
Melanie Kalmar &
James Cordes
James Fitterling &
Alex Lee

Thank You

Thank you to our donors, members, volunteers, and staff! And a special thanks to Midland Neighbors for featuring HSoMC in their monthly issues.
Articles written by Casey Nicholson and Lynn Looby. Photography by Deb Lambesis and Lisa Weldy.
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Adoption Hours: Monday-Friday 12-7 p.m. & Saturday 11 a.m.-4 p.m. 
Intake Hours (By Appointment Only): Monday-Friday 12-6 p.m. & Saturday 11 a.m.-3 p.m.