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1105 Clark Fork Drive
Missoula, MT 59808
406-549-3934
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New Facility - Questions and Answers

The Missoula Humane Society's capital drive will be the largest and most significant fund-raising campaign in our 40-year history. Our estimated goal of $1,575,000 will allow us to retrofit the recently purchased property on Highway 93, and build a solid future for our organization. It is time that we expand to meet the needs of a growing and changing population in western Montana.

The following information contain answers to the most frequently asked questions about the capital campaign and building project and operations of The Missoula Humane Society.

Why is The Missoula Humane Society launching a campaign at this time?

Our building is nearly 40 years old and crumbling. Because of severe settling, floors are slanted, doors and windows no longer fit, there are large cracks in nearly every wall and significant leaks in the roof over the kennel. Spending money on repairs at this time wouldn't be cost efficient. In addition, our programs and services have changed dramatically since 1963 when the shelter first opened. Animal sheltering and humane education are more complex undertakings today than they have ever been. The Missoula Humane Society's facilities are greatly in need of modernization to meet stringent contemporary standards of animal care and to serve an increasing population. A new facility will allow us to fulfill our mission and to more effectively reach out to Western Montana with education, animal care, and adoption programs.

What is the vision for the new shelter?

Our vision for the new Missoula Humane Society is for it to be a community resource center for all things animal related. We will still house and adopt homeless animals, but the new building will allow us to provide free classes, school programs, and volunteer partnerships on site. The new shelter will have a retail appearance, will be less institutional, and will be able to house animals in an environment that is more appealing to potential adopters. With improved sanitation and a better housing environment animals may be kept longer, thus increasing their chances of adoption. We have always served as a model shelter for other humane societies in our state and with our new building we will continue to be an inspiration to other animal welfare groups.

How many pets does The Missoula Humane Society place, and will that increase at the new facility?

The national average among animal shelters for placement of homeless pets is about 30%. At The Missoula Humane Society we place 60% of the animals in our care. Our new adoption program coupled with a larger facility will enable us to continue to increase our adoption rate. To help us achieve our goal of placing more homeless pets, we have special volunteer driven programs that rehabilitate and train animals that are difficult to place. A new shelter would afford us the space to expand these programs and the number of people participating in them. The new shelter will also be designed to keep new arrivals and sick animals quarantined to help decrease the spread of disease. Fewer animals would need to be euthanized simply because they are ill and we lack space to isolate them.

How does this campaign differ from your regular fund-raising activities?

Like other non-profit organizations, we seek funds on an annual basis to support our regular services. This campaign, by contrast, focuses on a high priority one-time need.

Whom the new shelter will serve?

We will continue to be an open-admissions shelter, which means that we accept any animal from any person for any reason. Since we are the largest animal shelter in western Montana, residents from all over this area of the state are supported by our services. About 40% of the animals we take in are from areas outside of the city limits. Last year we received animals from as far as Philipsburg, Deer Lodge, and Salmon, Idaho. Most come from the Bitterroot Valley, Mission Valley, and small towns west of Missoula like St. Regis and Superior. Many areas of western Montana either do not have animal control or have woefully inadequate animal shelter facilities so the only option is to bring animals in need to us. In the last year we have begun to take animals from neighboring shelters that have run out of space. Most have come from the Mission Valley Animal Shelter and Browning Animal Control. Our shelter is as much of a regional facility as it is a local one.

If the county is also building a new facility for Animal Control, can't you just share space? Aren't your services duplicated?

Actually, the services offered by the Missoula Humane Society are quite different than Missoula Animal Control. The city/county funded Animal Control agency primarily handles stray dogs from within Missoula County. They are unable to accept dogs from out of the county, any animal unwanted by its owner, or any cats. The Missoula Humane Society, on the other hand, accepts all animals. About 70% of the animals brought to our shelter would not be accepted at Missoula Animal Control. In addition, a large part of our mission is education and community outreach. Our Humane Education, Publicity, and Volunteer programs are unique to our organization. After discussions with Missoula County regarding a possible merge, it was decided that the best way to keep the mission and goals of each organization intact was to stay as separate entities. We can continue to have a good working relationship at separate locations.

Will there be naming opportunities for my donation?

Donors of $3,000 or more will have the opportunity to name a space or place in the new building. All donors will be recognized in a manner consistent with their level of giving. Gifts can be made in honor or in memory of a beloved person or pet. Plaques will be located on the room or area designated.

What options do I have in making a gift to the campaign?

There are many ways in which you may make a gift to this campaign. Gifts of cash are of course, appropriate, as are the transfer of appreciated assets such as stocks or bonds. In-kind donations of building materials or shelter equipment are also useful. Consult your tax advisor for more information about this type of giving.

Can I make a long-term pledge?

Multi-year pledges are often the most advantageous gift arrangements for both the donor and the Campaign. Not only do they provide tax savings over the course of several years; they also offer donors the opportunity to consider a larger overall gift than might otherwise be possible in a one-time contribution. For our campaign, pledges from one to three years will be accepted. Payments can be made on a schedule that meets your needs-monthly, quarterly, semi-annually, or annually. The choice is yours.


The Missoula Humane Society is a non profit corporation under Section 501 c 3 of the Internal Revenue Code. All donations are tax deductible to the
full extent of the law.


Missoula Humane Society • 1105 Clark Fork Drive, Missoula, Montana 59808 • 406-549-3934