Press Release January 2017



The Staff and Board of Directors of the Columbia Humane Society (CHS) has welcomed 2017 with open arms.  We are very pleased with the progress that the shelter made in 2016 and we are looking forward to what 2017 will have to offer CHS and Columbia County.


In 2016, we saw the beginning of our Canaan Dog Project. It has been very successful, with a total of sixteen dogs from Israel finding homes. Our dog enrichment program was initiated with shelter dog play groups, and different enrichment activities that happen daily in the kennels. We are excited about growing this program through 2017.


Over the past year, we have seen our volunteer support flourish. Our volunteers are always prepared to assist not only the animals, but our small staff of five people. We are excited to report that between our board of directors and volunteers, they have collectively logged nearly 4000 hours of service. We could not have succeeded without them, and cannot thank them enough. Working together, we are pleased to say that we found adopted homes for 267 cats and 312 dogs, we reunited 232 dogs with their owners, we placed two dogs with the Washington Department of Corrections, and we placed one dog with the National Search Dog Foundation. CHS was able to recognize the working potential of these pets and find them the homes that they needed and deserved.


We saw a return of the ASPCA-sponsored Adoption Ambassador Program. We are happy to say that we successfully placed sixteen cats in loving homes through the work of our ambassadors.  We were able to participate locally in many events, including the Clatskanie Fourth of July celebration, the Arts Festival in Scappoose, Vernonia Pet Day, and the Columbia City celebration, as well as a month-long booth that we held at Halloween Town in Saint Helens. We enjoyed each of these events, particularly the opportunities to interact with the residents of Columbia County, educate the public about what we do as a shelter, and get a better understanding of what the residents of Columbia County look for in the Humane Society.


Through some very generous private donations, we were able to start our Senior Dog Program. While funds last, it will ensure that each dog who comes into our care over the age of eight years old will receive full medical care, including a veterinary exam, blood and urine analysis, altering, and dental care, if required before becoming adoption-ready.  We want to provide our animals with the best care possible, but moreover, to give potential adopters the chance to make the most educated decision about adopting a senior pet, or indeed, any at all. We are looking forward to writing grant proposals in 2017 to keep this program running, as well as extending this program to our senior cat population.


All of these notable accomplishments would not be possible without the generous support of our sponsors and donors. As we all know, funding is the key to keeping any non-profit up and running, as we rely solely on donors, grants, fines and fees, and a single contract with Columbia County for all of our funding. Therefore, we would like to thank our current business sponsors: Midway Veterinary Hospital, Merck Animal Health, Columbia River PUD, Saint Helens Federal Credit Union, Fred Meyer, Columbia County Brewing, and Story Time Bakery. In addition to the sponsorship of these businesses, we received very generous grants and donations from The Samuel L Johnston Foundation, Windermere Charitable Giving, ASPCA, Wings of Rescue, Portland General Electric, The Pedigree Foundation, and The Petfinder Association. We would also like to thank our many private donors who support us with their very generous donations.  It is through all this support that we are able to make CHS a sanctuary for the pets of Columbia County and beyond.


We look forward to the many opportunities and challenges awaiting CHS in 2017. We are anticipating the opening of our new Meet and Greet suite and Training Facility. We intend to implement upgrades to the living quarters of our cats in intake and isolation, as well as some general shelter repairs. We hope to attend more community outreach events this year, particularly including visits to senior centers and schools.  


Our current hours are 12 AM to 5 PM on Tuesdays through Thursdays, and both Saturdays and Sundays. Our volunteer orientation is always held at the shelter on the last Saturday of the month, from 11 AM to 12 PM. Please feel free to come in, meet our staff, and ask about adoption, volunteering, and fostering.  We look forward to serving you, our community, in 2017.


If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call 503-369-7643 or email