The Gastineau Humane Society (GHS) first opened its door in 1963. Staffed by volunteers, the original shelter was located under the Juneau-Douglas Bridge in a small space donated by the city and stocked with air kennels. As Juneau grew, so did the number of unwanted pets. By the mid 1970's, the original space was inadequate to handle the number of animals it was receiving. A local couple, concerned with the cramped conditions in the make shift building, donated land and volunteers set to work raising money to build a more permanent shelter. Climate and substandard building materials took their toll on the first shelter. Volunteers came to the rescue again and raised money to build the existing shelter in the mid 1980's. The shelter has 45 dog runs, two cat rooms (rooms designed specifically to hold cats in a common area so they do not have to be kenneled), two cat meet and greet rooms (where you can get to know an individual cat) and one dog meet and greet room (where you can spend time with one of the dogs). Additionally, we have quarantine areas for animals who have recently arrived and have not had a medical check up, an isolation ward for sick animals, medical kennels for animals who are recovering from surgery or serious injury and a clinic that cares for all GHS animals. Animals from all over Southeast Alaska have received a second chance at life at the Gastineau Humane Society. The professional staff and dedicated volunteers provide care and love to animals 365 days a year.
Adopting an animal is a serious decision requiring a life-long commitment to care for a creature that is totally dependent upon you. Pets need more than just food, water and shelter. The ASPCA has a great chart HERE to help you understand the costs associated with owning an animal. This chart represents the estimated minimum cost of humane care. You shouldn't expect to pay less than this, and you should definitely be prepared to pay more. Don’t forget to factor in the costs of unexpected veterinary care, as well as boarding facilities, pet sitters and dog walkers, if you plan to use them. Pets bring so much joy to people’s lives. They are companions and friends and just plain fun! Adopting a pet from the shelter is a wonderful way to bring love into your life and to give a deserving animal the home it needs and deserves. The adoption counselors at GHS are ready to help you with all of the decisions that need to be made before you make any pet a part of your life. The adoption process includes questions that will allow our staff to help place the animals under our care in the best home possible. Our staff is here to assist you and your new pet. We offer assistance with a vast array of issues from introducing your new pet to other family members (including other pets); training and behavior; rabies vaccinations; and much more. If it involves pets and we don’t know the answer, we will do all we can to help you find the answers you need.