Mission Statement

St. Joseph Bay Humane Society, Inc. is dedicated to relieve animal suffering, prevent animal cruelty, promote human education and enhance the animal and human bond.

History of the Shelter

In the Fall of 1995, after a visit to the pound to search for a neighbor's cat, Carolyn M. Lee became very concerned about the homeless animals of Gulf County. Conditions at the city and county pounds were deplorable and not likely to get better. Animals were being killed at a rate of approximately 70 per month.

Carolyn sought help from Dr. Tim Nelson, who arranged a meeting (Dec. 1995) between local government and a small group of concerned citizens dubbed "The Animal Control Volunteer Group." Dr. Nelson took to the City Commission the results of a local survey of citizens who thought we needed a Humane Society in Gulf County. Commissioners began looking at other shelters with thoughts of consolidating the city and county shelters. At the September 1997 meeting of the City Commission, the City Commissioners and John Stanley, Jr representing the Gulf County Commission, discussed building a new shelter. It was agreed that the county would provide land and inmate labor while the City would provide utilities. Each would pay the salary of one Animal Control Officer.

The St. Joseph Bay Humane Society was formed soon after and received 501c3 status in 1998. As of 2006, over 1000 animals have been adopted to happy homes and education regarding spaying and neutering to avoid the homeless problem is a focus at this time. A new facility was constructed in 2007 and provides safe housing for the homeless animals of our county.

Volunteers are the lifeline of this Humane Society, and many of them are shy about being recognized in public; but they are here and very active in the everyday business of helping homeless animals.