FAQs

General Information

Who serves rabbits in our community?

Currently, WHS only shelters cats and dogs.

  • The best resource for all things bunny is Rabbit Advocates in Portland.
  • Oregon Humane Society also takes rabbits.
  • Local Petco stores are very willing to rehome small pets.  Our local Petcos store are located at Keizer Station, on Lancaster Drive and on S. Commercial.

Do you offer financial help for veterinary care?

Willamette Humane Society can only offer veterinary care for stray and surrendered animals in our care.  Many veterinary clinics accept Care Credit, a special credit card that finances your pet veterinary care with as low as zero percent interest when the expense is paid off before the end of the promotion period.  See your veterinarian office manager or visit Care Credit online to apply, obtain more information, or find a list of participating veterinary clinics.  It’s easy to apply for Care Credit and you’ll receive an answer almost immediately.

Are there any resources for unwanted or neglected horses?

If you suspect criminal neglect or abuse of a horse, please contact your local law enforcement.

One prominent local resource for horses and farm animals is Lighthouse Farm Sanctuary in Scio, OR.

Do you offer pet food assistance?

Willamette Humane Society contributes the majority of its donated pet food to Meals on Wheels of America, who distributes the food to needy individuals through their home delivery program. Unfortunately, we are not able to provide pet food to individuals who visit the shelter, but you may be able to receive pet food through the following agencies.  Please call for details about availability and pick up times.

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Arches

Mid-Willamette Valley Community Action Agency (ARCHES)

  • 1164 Madison St NE, Salem, OR 97301
  • Telephone: 503-399-9080
  • Fax: 503-399-9118
  • Cherriot’s Bus Lines #3, #17, and #20
  • Office hours: Monday – Friday, 8:00 am – 5:00 pm



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Salvation Army

Salvation Army Salem

  • 1977 Front St. NE, Salem, OR 97301
  • Telephone: (503) 585-6688
  • Office Hours: Monday – Friday, 9 am – 12 pm, 1 pm – 4 pm



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Pongo Fund

The Pongo Fund (Portland)

  • 3632 SE 20th Avenue, Portland, OR 97202
  • Telephone: 503-939-7555



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FIDO Dog Food Bank (Oregon City)

CAT Adoption Team (Sherwood)

Where are the Adoptable Pet Locations?

On-site Adoption Locations

Adoption Locations- Click to Enlarge
Click Image to Enlarge Map
  • Admin Conference Room – If a cat is in the admin conference room, they may be a long-term resident or have other needs that can’t be met by our regular kennels, suites, or foster homes.  Please ask adoption staff about visiting with them.
  • Cattery A – Standard kennels, accessible from the shelter lobby/atrium, next to the education hall.
  • Cattery B – Accessible from Cattery A.
  • Clinic – Occasionally, our Spay & Neuter Clinic veterinarian and staff will foster a cat  to monitor them after a special surgical operation.  Please ask adoption staff about visiting with pets located in the clinic.
  • Foster Home – These are pets located off-site in volunteer foster homes.  To visit with them, please speak with our foster coordinator by e-mailing foster@whs4pets.org, or calling 503-585-5900 ext. 303.
  • Isolation Cats – These are cats recovering from communicable illnesses (such as kennel cough) in a special area of the shelter not accessible to the public. Please ask adoption staff about visiting with these pets during or after recovery.
  • Kitten Room – Our kitten room is located in the hallway from the lobby/atrium to the dog kennels, and across from the education hall.
  • Suite – There are three cat suites accessible from the shelter lobby.  This is the best location for bonded pairs or cats with special needs.  Ask adoption staff or a volunteer about visiting with these pets.


  • Adoption Dogs– Otherwise called the dog “adoption floor”, this area of dog kennels is located down the North hall from the the shelter lobby, past the education hall, and through the door on the right. There is a second bank of doors on the left leading to each row of kennels.
  • Foster Home– These are pets located off-site in volunteer foster homes.  To visit with them, please speak with our foster coordinator by e-mailing foster@whs4pets.org, or calling 503-585-5900 ext. 303.
  • Isolation Dogs– These are dogs recovering from communicable illnesses (such as kennel cough) in a special area of the shelter not accessible to the public. Please ask adoption staff about visiting with these pets during or after recovery.
  • Puppy Room– Puppies and small breeds are housed in the puppy room, in the North hallway from the shelter lobby, across from the education hall.  Not to be confused with “Mary’s Place” which is a puppy play-room for volunteers to socialize our pets, accessible from the main kennels.
  • Stray Dog Kennels– Sometimes, there are so many dogs available for adoption that we don’t have room for all of them on the adoption floor.  Some are sheltered in our stray dog kennels in an area not normally accessible to the public.  Please ask adoption staff or a volunteer for help visiting with these pets.

Off-Site Adoption Locations

Currently, Willamette Humane Society cats may be adopted from multiple locations in the Salem-Keizer area. Our cats are cared-for by Willamette Humane Society volunteers in space generously provided by the following businesses.

Can I Perform Court Ordered Community Service?

  • Community service hours can be fulfilled at Willamette Humane Society (WHS) unless your crime is violent in nature, involved theft, or is animal related.
  • You must be at least 16 years old to perform community service at WHS.
  • Applicants must complete and sign a service contract, available here, or at the shelter front desk.

    Community Service Contract
    Community Service Contract
  • Orientations for new applicants are held at the shelter on Sundays at 1 pm.  Check in at the front desk before that time.
  • Duties will primarily involve cleaning.  Animal handling is not a part of community service duties or permitted.
  • If you have questions about performing Community Service at Willamette Humane Society, please call 503-585-5900 ext. 309 or e-mail to customer.service@whs4pets.org.

What is your Asilomar Report and what does it mean?

In August of 2004, a group of animal welfare industry leaders from across the nation convened at Asilomar in Pacific Grove, California, for the purpose of building bridges across varying philosophies, developing relationships and creating goals focused on significantly reducing the euthanasia of healthy and treatable companion animals in the United States.

As part of the accords, a uniform reporting standard was created to foster transparency and establish a means of comparing animal shelters.

Willamette Humane Society publishes its annual Asilomar Live Release Rate Report in the Annual Report section of the website.

Read more about the Asilomar Accords online.

 

 

Who’s on your Board of Directors and what do they do?

Willamette Humane Society is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization governed by a volunteer board of directors.

Board Members as of July 2016

  • Mel Monroe, President
  • Terri Ellen, Vice President
  • Shannon Priem, Secretary
  • Terry Wade, Treasurer
  • Linda West, Past President
  • Tracy Crandall
  • Jean Dion
  • Paula Fordham
  • Kate Hager
  • Liz Henderson
  • Jenny Hudson
  • Terri Jackson, DVM

Responsibilities

The Board of Directors has the legal responsibility and authority to manage the affairs of the nonprofit corporation. General board responsibilities include:

  • Setting the direction and making policies for the organization.
  • Raising funds, or making provisions to have adequate organizational resources available.
  • Overseeing the finances, including adopting the budget, ensuring that financial safeguards are in place, ensuring that taxes are paid and creditors are provided for.
  • Adopting personnel policies for staff.
  • Appointing and overseeing the Executive Director to manage the day-to-day activities.
  • Linking the organization to the community by helping form relationships.

 

Contact the board or ask about board service

What is your Privacy Policy?

WHS Website Privacy Policy

Thank you for visiting Willamette Humane Society (WHS) online. WHS and whs4pets.org is committed to preserving your privacy and safeguarding your sensitive information. The following policy outlines the general practices of our website and online donation function. We do not collect personal information about you when you visit our website unless you choose to provide that information to us.

By visiting our website, you are accepting the practices described in this privacy policy.

Here is how we handle information about your visit to our website:

Information Collected and Stored Automatically

If you do nothing during your visit but browse through the website, read pages, or download information, Google Analytics will gather and store certain information about your visit automatically. This information does not identify you personally, but enables us to better understand how visitors use our site so we can continue to make improvements. We do not track or record information about individuals and their visits.

Google Analytics enables us to view only the following information about your visit:

  • Your IP address (an IP address is a number that is automatically assigned to your computer whenever you are surfing the Web) from which you access our website
  • The type of browser and operating system used to access our site
  • The language of your browser
  • The county where you viewed our site
  • The date and time you access our site
  • The pages you visited
  • The length of time you viewed each page
  • If you linked to whs4pets.org from another website, the address of that website

If you sign-up for “Momentary Paws”, WHS’s email update, your email address is stored in a secure list and only used for the purpose of sending Momentary Paws updates. Unsubscribe information is at the bottom of every Momentary Paws email sent.

If You Send Us Personal Information

If you choose to provide us with personal information — as in an e-mail to a staff member, subscribing to our electronic newsletter, or by filling out a form with your personal information and submitting it to us through our website — we use that information to respond to your message and to help us get you the information you have requested or record a donation. We treat emails the same way we treat letters sent to WHS. We are required to maintain many documents for accounting purposes (if a donation was given), but we do not collect personal information for any purpose other than to respond to you. Moreover, we do not create individual profiles with the information you provide or to give it to any other organizations. WHS does not collect information for commercial marketing and does not share its donor list. We reserve the right to publish a list of contributors of time and money in our annual report and other publications. If you do not want your name listed in such publications, please notify the development department at 503-585-5900 ext. 304.

 

If You Donate Online

Protecting your donation information is a priority. WHS makes every effort to protect your online donation/order information by using Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) technology.

When donors submit sensitive information via our web site, their information is protected both online and off-line. Before a donor is asked to enter sensitive information (such as a credit card number), that information is encrypted and is protected with SSL, the best encryption software in the industry.

While we use SSL encryption to protect sensitive information online, we also do everything in our power to protect donor information off-line. All of our donor information, not just the sensitive information mentioned above, is restricted in our offices. Only employees who need the information to perform a specific job are granted access to personally sensitive information. All employees are kept up-to-date on our security and privacy practices.

In accordance with PCI compliance standards, Willamette Humane Society uses Authorize.net to securely process donations. This company does not retain, share, store or use personally identifiable information for any secondary purposes.  Also, Willamette Humane Society does not have the ability to view, edit, or otherwise transfer your credit card information once you submit your information through the website.

 

Links to Other Sites

WHS’s website provides links to other websites as a resource. Once you link to a new site, you are subject to their privacy policies.

 

Complying with the Judicial or Legal System

Though WHS makes every effort to preserve donor privacy, we may need to disclose personal information when required by law wherein we have a good-faith belief that such action is necessary to comply with a current judicial proceeding, a court order, or legal process served on our organization.

 

Disclaimer

Any information posted on WHS’s website is for general information purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice, medical opinion, diagnosis, or treatment. Any information provided is not a substitute for veterinary medical attention. See your licensed veterinary health-care professional for your pet’s medical advice and treatment.

 

Changes to Privacy Policy

WHS reserves the right to change this privacy policy at any time.

 

Contacting Willamette Humane Society

Willamette Humane Society works hard to ensure that your online experience is a positive one. If you have any questions about this privacy statement, the practices of WHS, or your dealings with our website, please call 503-585-5900.

Why do you write Humaneitarian Instead of Humanitarian?

At first glance it may appear as if we’ve made a typo on our website and printed materials!

In the case of the Humaneitarian Awards, we’re coining our own term.

A Humanitarian Award honors those who promote human welfare, but as a Humane Society, we hold our Humaneitarian Awards to honor people who exemplify Willamette Humane Society’s mission of providing compassionate services to pets and people.

We generally try to bold and italicize the e so our community knows that we’re putting it there deliberately, but unfortunately the style of our website headers and urls removes our formatting at times.

We hope you’ll join us for upcoming events!

How many animals does Willamette Humane Society serve each year?

Every year an average of  5,000 animals come through our doors. Lost or stray animals will be brought in by Good Samaritans or dog control agents. We also care for animals seized by law enforcement agents due to neglect. Sometimes because of tragedy, animals are left without a guardian.   In all cases, we work to find each animal a loving home.

Does Willamette Humane Society care for stray/lost animals?

Yes, Willamette Humane Society cares for stray dogs found in Polk County, as well as  all the stray and lost cats found in Marion and Polk Counties.  Stray dogs found in Marion County must go to the Marion County Dog Shelter, located at 3550 Aumsville Hwy SE in Salem.  A report may also be submitted through the organization’s website.  The Marion County Dog Shelter’s phone number is (503) 588-5233.

Community members  may bring lost  animals to WHS by appointment or during walk-in hours. Animals are scanned for a microchip and the Good Samaritan is asked to fill out a brief personality profile to provide us with any details observed while caring for the animal.  Animals not claimed by their owners are evaluated for the adoption pool.  In addition, all injured and ill animals are cared for immediately.   

Sometimes, community members who find a lost or stray pet choose to keep that animal in their homes while waiting for an owner match. In this scenario, the individual should still fill out a found pet report and bring the animal to WHS to be scanned for a microchip.  We keep this report for 30 days or until a match is made.

Since we depend on donations to serve our community, we ask for a suggested donation of $10 to bring in a stray animal.

What is the “hold” time for a stray or lost animal?

Before any animal can be adopted by a new owner, there is a stray hold time to give owners an opportunity to claim their pet.  Oregon law prescribes a three day hold time for dogs without identification and a five day hold time for dogs with identification.  

There are no laws for how long to hold a stray cat, but WHS places a one business day stray hold on a cat without identification. This does not include the day of arrival or any days we are closed to the public. Our return-to-owner rate for felines is no different than when we had a longer stray hold. In fact, stray cats now have greater adoption visibility and faster placement.

How do I report a lost or found pet?

Reports for lost and found pets can be submitted through our website. By facilitating online reporting of lost pets, many lost animals are finding their way back home without ever even coming into the shelter.

What about “surrendered” animals?

Surrendered animals are those brought in by their owners. Pets are surrendered for a variety of reasons, including the death of an owner, relocation, incorrect household fit, etc. There is no required holding period for these animals before making them available for adoption.  

Can an animal be left at the shelter for placement, but taken back if the only option is euthanasia?

We work hard to serve every animal that comes through our doors, but sometimes the transition into shelter life is just too difficult for an animal. In 2016, we implemented  a call-back program for the person surrendering an animal.  If we cannot help the animal in our adoption program, the surrendering party has the option of being called to see if they can take the animal back. We encourage people to do everything possible to find an appropriate home for their animals before bringing them to the shelter.

Is Willamette Humane Society affiliated with other humane societies?

Willamette Humane Society is a local, independent, 501(c)(3) non-profit organization serving the pets and people in Marion and Polk Counties. Although we may collaborate when our missions overlap, we are not affiliated with other local, state or national animal welfare organization. Willamette Humane is not a chapter of the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), nor do we receive funding from HSUS or from any other animal welfare organization.

How is Willamette Humane Society funded?

Willamette Humane depends entirely on donor support and service fees to provide services.
WHS has served the local community since 1965 and is an independent, private, federally registered, non-profit organization, governed by a volunteer Board of Directors.  To learn more about WHS, consider attending one of our volunteer orientations, or call to schedule a tour.

What are your open hours? How can we reach you?


  • Mon: 12:00 pm – 7:00 pm
  • Tue: CLOSED
  • Wed: CLOSED
  • Thu – Fri: 12:00 pm – 7:00 pm
  • Sat – Sun: 12:00 pm – 6:00 pm
4246 Turner Rd SE
Salem, OR 97317
503-585-5900Contact the Shelter

Receptionists are available to answer phones and return calls during business hours, and on Wednesday evening.


  • Mon – Sat: 10:30 am – 6:00 pm
  • Sun: CLOSED
548 High St NE (between Union & Marion)
Salem, OR 97301
503-362-6892Contact the Thrift Store



Is Willamette Humane Society a “no kill” shelter?

Willamette Humane Society (WHS) is a “managed intake” shelter, which means we accept cats, kittens, puppies and dogs primarily from Marion and Polk Counties as space and resources allow.

While we are not an official participant of the “No Kill” movement, all of the conditions and programs collectively referred to as the “no kill equation” are actively implemented at Willamette Humane Society.

We are committed to saving as many pets as possible.  Each animal is treated as an individual upon intake.  There are no time limits for any animal in our shelter, and outcomes are determined by health and temperament.  When a pet cannot be admitted to our adoption program, the pet owner is provided with alternative options.

Thanks to financial and volunteer support from our community, there are resources to help each animal thrive until adoption.   Animals receive medical care as well as training, exercise, and socialization based on that animal’s individual needs.  In addition, WHS is a resource to people needing free behavior advice, training classes, and low cost spay and neuter services.  Finally, our robust humane education programs in the schools train the next generation of pet owners.

Our 2015-2016 save rate of 90% for dogs rising 80% for cats is an indicator of shelter and community success in rehoming animals.  The number of animals we save each year is available to the public in our annual report.

How do you decide which animals are put up for adoption? Why can’t every animal be put up for adoption?

Animals are thoroughly evaluated for both health and temperament for our adoption program.

In the case of dogs, we have no breed discrimination rules for pit bulls or other bully breeds, but rather we assess each animal’s potential on an individual basis using the ASPCA’s SAFER test, which measures how well the dog reacts to people, touch, sound, toys, food and other dogs.

Animals that are suffering mentally and/or physically due to injury or disease, vicious or aggressive animals whose adoption placement would constitute a danger to the public, and animals that pose a public health hazard are not put up for adoption. The decision to euthanize an animal is never taken lightly, and each case is thoroughly assessed on an individual basis. If an animal must be euthanized, he or she is treated humanely and with respect.

How do you determine when an animal’s “time is up?”

We do not impose artificial time limits on adoptable animals. As long as the animal remains healthy and temperamentally sound, he or she will stay in our adoption program. Staff and volunteers socialize and exercise animals to help keep them healthy for as long as they are in our care. If an animal begins to show signs of stress in the shelter, we may transfer him or her to another shelter or rescue group, or provide a temporary respite in a volunteer foster home.

Why do so many people surrender their animals? Is there something wrong with the animals?

Most animals are surrendered because the owner’s circumstances change, not because there is anything wrong with the animal. People may find that they can no longer afford to care for their animal, they need to move and their new housing does not accept pets, or they no longer have the time to spend with them. Failure to spay or neuter a pet also results in hard-to-place litters, which are then brought to the shelter.  Many animals brought to Willamette Humane are healthy, temperamentally sound, and terrific companions for their new adopters.