Since the outbreak of the COVID-19 Pandemic, HSPC has been studying and analyzing news reports, information from every level of our government, and information from medical experts and from our peer groups (other animal shelters and organizations).  Sherri Galle-Teske, HSPC Executive Director, is an active participant in several weekly conference calls dealing with local and state changes.  Each day HSPC gets requests for updates and our desire to return to what may become known as the pre-pandemic “Good Old Days” increases.

This update is intended to provide information to a wide group of folks who have long vested and deeply connected roots to the Humane Society of Portage County.  This group includes, but is not limited to: employees, board of directors members, volunteers, fosters, donors, supporters, local law enforcement agencies, and municipal & county leaders.

We want to keep our clients and employees safe and cooperate in helping to limit or prevent the spread of this illness.  This issue requires all of us to take personal responsibility for our actions to prevent illness from spreading. HSPC will follow all recommendations from our local health departments.

What most of us have already found out is that the information available is sometimes contradictory and the politics and science are not always in agreement.  Our plans have changed several times over the past couple months, and they will likely change several more times as we are educated by more information and real life experiences.  As we make decisions, we use our mission as a measuring stick to compare and evaluate a range of solutions.  Our Mission is to prevent cruelty, abuse, neglect and overpopulation of companion animals while seeking adoption of these animals into compatible homes, and teaching humane awareness and respect for all life, thus helping to build a better community. In addition to our mission we have a contract with Portage County to provide the Animal Control and Sheltering responsibilities that our local governments are responsible for.

After reviewing our mission and responsibilities these points became clear to us.

  • We need a healthy staff to care for the animals and fulfill our responsibilities.
  • We need to provide care for the animals in our custody.
  • We need to support the community with Animal Control and lost/found animals.
  • Our most critical resource was identified as staff.  In some areas there is only one person providing critical work – we have only one veterinarian and one office manager.  In other areas we have a few staff members who have seven day a week – morning, noon and night responsibilities.  Animal Control Officers are on call 24 hours a day – 7 days a week and shelter care staff feed, medicate and exercise animals multiple times each day.

Last updated August 14, 2020