Partnership aims to increase animal control adoptions

NOW: Partnership aims to increase animal control adoptions

BENTON HARBOR, Mich. -- The coronavirus pandemic has led to surges in adoptions at animal shelters but at animal control, they’re hoping to encourage more people to rescue those pets, too.

Far too often overcrowding and health conditions lead to strays having to be euthanized at animal control and they have limited resources to help. As a government agency, animal control isn’t able to operate like many shelters, which are often 501(c)(3)’s.

That’s where Friends of Berrien County Animal Control is stepping in to help get more pets in forever homes.

“Embedded collars, spay and neuter, vaccines, heart worm tests, preventative medications. There’s also behavioral issues that they need help with so we can get them training to settle into a home better,” said Katherine Francis, President of Friends of Berrien County Animal Control.

While also trying to release the stigma about animal control’s role —

“I think a lot of people look at it like animal control it’s the heavy hand, it’s the law enforcement aspect of it. We’re trying make that persona better and explain to people our numbers are better, we’re doing more things, we’re reaching out,” said Tiffany Peterson, Director of Berrien County Animal Control.

And – relieving fears some may have about adopting an animal with a troubled past.

“There’s a dog that comes in that was mistreated, they’re absolutely beautiful dogs, beautiful cats that are surprisingly lovely,” said Francis.

The ultimate goal for this new partnership — giving animals a second chance in a loving home.

“Whatever comes our way we try to nurture it or rehab it. We really try to help these animals because it’s not their choice, it’s not their fault,” said Peterson.

Animal Control will be heavily relying on fundraising from the “Friends Of” organization for medical supplies and volunteers. If you’d like to get involved, go to or email [email protected].

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