Best Pet Rescue Shelters In Minnesota

February 28, 2014 7:00 AM

(credit: VYACHESLAV OSELEDKO/AFP/Getty Images)

Very few organizations provide comprehensive pet housing and adoption in Minnesota. While every community has an animal impound facility, they do not always have the resources to house animals for optimal physical and mental comfort, nor do they have the capability to meticulously screen potential adopters for animals with special needs. Hence, pet impound institutions rely on rescue partners for more thorough background checking and screening of applications to foster or adopt. Many metro-area pet rescue organizations provide first-rate animal rescue and adoption services but do not have a shelter to house the creature. Only the Animal Humane Society, with five metro area shelters, provides both comprehensive pet housing and adoption. It is likely the best in the Upper Midwest. Two other noteworthy organizations dedicated to the welfare of pets that have lost their homes are highlighted below. Add a new deserving member to your family with a visit to one of these animal-loving spots in Minnesota.

Animal Humane Society
Multiple locations

The Animal Humane Society is exemplary in engaging the “hearts, hands and minds of the community to help animals.” It is a completely independent metro-based organization that provides comprehensive programs and services seven days a week at its locations in Buffalo, Coon Rapids, Golden Valley, St. Paul and Woodbury. The organization is not related to the Minnesota Humane Society, the Humane Society of the United States or American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. The five locations of the Animal Humane Society took in over 23,000 homeless pets during the last fiscal year and placed 17,000 in homes during that time. Find your next pet on WCCO’s Animal Humane Society Pet Of The Week.

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Animal Ark Shelter
2600 Industrial Court
Hastings, MN 55033
(651) 772-8983

Not only is Animal Ark dedicated to the No Kill concept, but it is also noteworthy for ensuring comfort to homeless dogs, felines and bunnies. Just a few of the amenities provided to dogs are the spacious kennels with soft, raised bed with blankets, chew toys and treats. In addition, dogs take potty breaks and play with other dogs in large, outdoor play yards three times each day. Visitors can run and play with their potential dog pet in Ark Park. Homeless cats are afforded comfortable low-stress housing and bunnies are afforded luxury cage-free areas. Also check out the Animal Ark Thrift & Pet Store located at 809 E. 7th Street in Saint Paul. It generates as much as $60,000 per year to provide shelter and care for animals.

Second Chance Animal Rescue
P.O. Box 10533
White Bear Lake, MN 55110

Second Chance Animal Rescue does not provide a pet shelter but it is a great resource for the very helpful brochure for anyone losing their pet. The brochure provides contact information of all metro area pet impound facilities. The organization also provides a rule of thumb on how far pets may wander. Dogs may travel as far as five miles depending upon the size of the animal. Cats generally wander no more than a couple blocks. Placing your pet’s food outside your door may help entice them back.

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Robin Johnson was born in Annandale, Minn. and graduated from Richfield High School and then the University of Minnesota where he studied Political Science, Business and Industrial Relations. A writer for, he also consults with a variety of organizations and individuals helping them develop and grow. His work can be found at