While animal sheltering has always been a field with many up-hill challenges, the past two years have been particularly difficult as we experience the impact of dog adoptions slowing both locally and nationally. Multiple factors are influencing this trend including economic hardship, housing insecurity, and rising costs in veterinary care. We’re also seeing a significant uptick in the number of unplanned litters of puppies entering the shelter. Animal shelters across the country have been operating at full capacity all year round and Lawrence Humane is no exception.  

However, Lawrence Humane has remained committed to lifesaving in spite of any challenges that come our way. In 2023 we doubled down on community support services in order to reduce the number of animals – now and long-term – entering the shelter who otherwise have a loving home, but simply need a bit of assistance.

In 2023 we…

  • Provided preventative medical care through our Crisis Pet Retention program to 65% more community animals; 
  • Distributed 69% more pet food to feed community pets;
  • Performed 62% more low-cost spay/neuter surgeries for community pets; and
  • Focused on providing preventative care to the pets of unhoused community members, working to reduce unplanned litters.


As you read through these pages, we hope you feel the magnitude of what we as a community have been able to accomplish together and feel hopeful about what more we can do in 2024!


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2022 was a year of firsts: The first full year for Lawrence Humane to be our community’s primary pet food pantry. The first ever National Pet Vaccination Month. The first year for Lawrence Humane’s clinic to be able to do in-house x-rays for injured animals. And the first year of our brand new Animal Services Division, established in order to provide field services to unincorporated Douglas County.


With every new “first,” Lawrence Humane staff, volunteers, fosters, donors, and supporters rose to meet the challenge. We distributed 60,819 lbs of pet food to pet owners who were struggling. We hosted six vaccine/microchip clinics with our community partners, ensuring that 300 animals from 171 households were vaccinated during National Pet Vaccination Month. We made sure that animals with broken bones received the best and most efficient veterinary care and didn’t suffer needlessly. And we brought our support-first philosophy outside the shelter walls and into unincorporated Douglas County.


We did all of this while still staying true to our mission of providing shelter, care, and advocacy for homeless and vulnerable animals, as well as resources for the pets and people in our community. 


We are excited to work alongside you in 2023 to ensure that our community continues to be one that prioritizes service, compassion, and care for its pets and people.