Animal Shelters, Homeless Pets Get Boost from MDARD Grants

Taxpayers: Remember to Check 'Animal Welfare Fund' Box on Voluntary Contributions Tax Form

For Immediate Release: February 19, 2020
Media Contact: Jessy Sielski, 517-284-5725

LANSING – The Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) is proud to announce the recipients of the 2020 Animal Welfare Fund grants. This year, MDARD will distribute $127,240 to 23 registered animal shelters throughout the state to support the spaying and neutering of shelter dogs and cats to help them be more adoptable. Grants also help support many anti-cruelty and proper care programs and training around the state. Registered shelters also can receive assistance through the grant program for the unrecovered costs of care for animals involved in legal investigations.

The Animal Welfare Fund is supported by generous Michiganders during tax season when they check the fund’s box on Form 4642, Voluntary Contributions Schedule, with their state tax returns. Since 2010, MDARD has distributed more than $1.3 million to more than 185 local animal shelters. One hundred percent of the contributions made to this fund are used for Michigan animal welfare programs.

“Throughout Michigan, small towns and big cities alike struggle to find resources they need to provide care to the animals they rescue,” said State Veterinarian Nora Wineland, DVM. “What is unique about the Animal Welfare Fund is that every penny we collect goes directly to the programs that protect and provide care for neglected animals or homeless dogs and cats in our state—which ultimately helps get them into a safe place.”

This year, MDARD received 47 applications totaling more than $402,274 in requests. Some of the innovative projects chosen this year included the following:

  • Assisting the setup of shelter surgical suites where local veterinarians have agreed to provide free or low-cost sterilization surgeries, to reduce the stress on the animals that currently must be transported off-site and reduce the length of stay for shelter animals.
  • Advertising a program that promotes and educates the public regarding the benefits of adopting cats that are already spayed or neutered.
  • Sterilizing shelter cats and dogs that are adopted by military veterans, a program connecting rescued animals and veterans with second chances and new beginnings.
  • Supporting training courses for animal control and animal law enforcement officers, enhancing expertise on new methods, emerging animal welfare issues, updated laws, and specific training on the care and protection of animals.

The following animal shelter organizations were awarded 2020 Animal Welfare Fund grants:

  1. Addison Veterinary Clinic PC - $5,120
  2. BestPals Animal Rescue Center - $5,000
  3. Capital Area Humane Society - $1,190
  4. Cass County Animal Shelter - $10,000
  5. Charlevoix County Humane Society Inc. - $10,000
  6. Friends of Companion Animals - $5,000
  7. Gratiot County Animal Shelter - $5,000 
  8. Humane Society of Genesee County - $670
  9. Kalkaska County Animal Shelter - $2,940
  10. Macomb County Animal Shelter - $1,490
  11. Madison Heights Animal Shelter - $4,640
  12. Manistee County Humane Society’s Homeward Bound Animal Shelter - $6,129
  13. Newaygo County Animal Shelter - $874
  14. Pet Angel Adoption and Rescue Inc. - $7,500
  15. Roscommon County Animal Shelter - $10,000
  16. Saginaw County Animal Care Center - $8,000
  17. Sanilac County Humane Society Inc. - $7,000
  18. St. Clair County Animal Control Shelter - $6,000
  19. St. Joseph County Animal Shelter - $7,520
  20. The Ferndale Cat Shelter - $5,000
  21. The Michigan Humane Society - $9,000
  22. The Ogemaw County Humane Society - $4,583
  23. Upper Peninsula Animal Welfare Shelter Inc. - $4,584

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