Our Story

Indiana’s Only Open Admission Truly No-Kill Shelter

A Lifetime of Chances

We believe in second chances… and third… and fourth… In fact, we believe every adoptable animal deserves every chance at finding a forever home. That’s why we operate as Indiana’s only open admission truly no-kill shelter. Any animal that can be saved, rehabilitated, or treated is never euthanized. That’s our promise to them… and to you. After all, one of them may be your soulmate.

A Brighter Future

The days of ‘making due’ in our over-crowded facility that is missing fundamental areas necessary to efficiently function simply must end.  The good news is, our dream of building a new state-of-the-art facility that allows for sunlight on cat faces, grass under dog feet, noise control in the kennel, quiet recovery areas for the injured and better disease control to prevent illness is within our grasp.

The Gold

With an open admission policy, a No-Kill philosophy, and more than 3,100 animals crossing our threshold each year, we have still maintained a 98% placement rate over the last 3 years.

This is an amazing feat for any organization…let alone one that takes in some of the most abused, injured and seriously ill animals imaginable.

Measuring Our Impact


Percent average annual U.S. placement rate


Percent average annual HSHC placement rate


Average animals admitted to HSHC annually

  • 01.

    Our Story

    The Humane Society for Hamilton County (HSHC) is a non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization that was founded in 1984.

    We are not operated by the county; rather, we are governed by an Executive Director and Board of Directors. Meet our team.

  • 02.

    Each Life Matters

    The Humane Society for Hamilton County is the only open-admission, TRULY NO KILL organization in Indiana and one of the few in the United States. We receive some of the most abused & severely injured animals imaginable. Being “no-kill” by the true definition means that all animals with injuries or illnesses that are treatable/manageable (with a good quality of life) or have behavior issues that are rehabilitatable, or those with special medical needs or disabilities–of all ages and breeds–are considered “adoptable” or “savable” animals. It means much more than not euthanizing animals for time or space. Our ability to give these animals a second chance depends 100% on donations & our fundraising efforts.

  • 03.

    Completing Families with New Friends

    We’re committed to finding every adoptable animal a loving home. By focusing our efforts into dynamic adoption and placement programs, each of our animals gets the chance to find a happy, forever home… complete with happy, forever humans.

  • 04.

    Our Definition of "Adoptable"

    To be a ‘truly’ No-Kill organization starts with your definition of who is adoptable. In accordance with our industry’s definition of No-Kill and the “Asilomar Accords,” we consider animals adoptable regardless of breed, age, special medical needs, disabilities, severity of injury or behavior challenges–as long as they are treatable or rehabilitatable–and will have a good quality of life.

    The fact we are also an open-admission facility who embraces this philosophy is what makes our results so remarkable.

  • 05.

    Remarkable People

    Our employees, volunteers and board of directors are unwavering in their commitment to these animals. Our team works 365 days a year to ensure the animals we serve have the best life possible as they wait for a home. They’re the heart of HSHC…and they are remarkable.

  • 06.

    Our Funding

    We do contract with Hamilton County and its municipalities to serve as both the animal control facility and Humane Society for Hamilton County. Therefore, we do receive partial funding from the county to hold stray and unwanted animals for a period of 7 days.

    The funding we receive from the county and its municipalities covers only basic shelter and care, vaccines and general processing of each animal for one week. Any life-saving medical care a new arrival may require, however, is 100% funded by the shelter’s Survivor Program from day one.

    Our annual operating budget for 2018 is approximately $2.1M with approximately 21% of our funding will come from county contracts.

Our Mission

Our mission is: Saving Lives. Educating Communities. Completing Families.

We don’t think any family is complete without a furry companion, and no community is complete without compassion for and a commitment to serve those who have no voice.

Services & Resources

Spay & Neuter

Control pet overpopulation with the Low-Cost Spay Neuter Clinic located next door to HSHC

Pet Food

Free pet food to pet owners dealing with financial hardship (in partnership with Good Samaritan)

Foster Care

Extensive foster care network provides temporary housing to HSHC pets who need a break from the shelter or to recover from medical issues before going up for adoption

Pet Cremation

We partner with Pet Angel Memorial Center to provide dignified and meaningful options for your pet’s body care. We offer the option to either have your pet individually cremated or a communal cremation. Paw prints and name plate keepsakes are also available for purchase. For more information call (317) 773-4974.

Love & Let Live

Every animal deserves a second chance at love — and life. We invite you to be part of the solution and give back to the animals who give us so much.