The Jacksonville Humane Society was awarded a generous grant from Maddie’s Fund in 2019 to host eight veterinary externships with students from around the world! Thanks to Maddie’s, the students experienced hands-on learning in our veterinary services division. They completed rounds, performed surgeries and assisted in medical emergencies under the guidance of our Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Stan Hill, and JHS veterinarian, Dr. Katie Green.

The externs shared these reflections about their experience at JHS:

My time at JHS was certainly well spent. My learning in this time period was exponential and I will carry the things that I did and saw with me for the rest of my career. In addition to my learning, I also made lasting connections with some fantastic mentors to help guide me in the future. I will be a better, stronger, more competent and humble veterinarian because of the time I spent at Jacksonville Humane Society.” – Kayla, University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, Class of 2020

I am originally from the Jacksonville area and am very interested in shelter medicine which is what led me to the externship opportunity at the Jacksonville Humane Society. This organization has confirmed my interest in this part of veterinary medicine. I loved seeing the way the entire veterinary team worked together and communicated. The work done here is very meaningful and you can see the passion that each employee carries with them towards their work. It was refreshing to see such an efficiently run clinic with people that seemed to genuinely enjoy the work that they do.” – Madison, Massey University New Zealand, Class of 2019

Two weeks at Jacksonville Humane Society flew by as I was enveloped in the world of shelter medicine. Each day consisted of surgeries, medical rounds, and even some emergency surprises. I fell in love with this shelter from day one and left feeling confident that this was the type of career I wanted to do. The veterinarians, Dr. Green and Dr. Hill, are both incredible doctors and teachers. They challenged me to think and work independently while also providing an abundance of information whenever I asked questions or needed clarification.” – Rainey, University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine, Class of 2020

A Maddie’s veterinary extern performs a spay surgery at the Jacksonville Humane Society.

This educational opportunity was made possible #ThanksToMaddie.

The “Kitten Crisis” exists not only in Jacksonville, but in locations all over the state of Florida due to unaltered community cats, resulting in an excess amount of kittens brought to local shelters. The Jacksonville Humane Society has taken in over 3,000 kittens so far this year, and those numbers continue to climb.

For 10 years, Florida Animal Friend has aimed to end pet overpopulation throughout Florida by increasing awareness and raising significant funds to support spay and neuter programs statewide. One of the main ways the organization completes these two goals is through the sale of their custom license plates, pictured above. The Spay and Neuter license plate is adorable, yes, but it also serves a purpose: thanks to the sale of these license plates, Florida Animal Friend is able to fund spay and neuter programs at nonprofit animal welfare organizations just like JHS.

This year, we’re thrilled to announce that JHS is the recipient of a generous grant of $15,000 from Florida Animal Friend. With this grant, we will be able to complete an additional 375 spay and neuter surgeries (averaging $40 per surgery). In seven years, just one female cat and her offspring can produce 370,000 kittens. Through these additional surgeries, we estimate we can prevent the births of more than 2,000 kittens.

To support both Florida Animal Friend and JHS, be sure to check out for more information – and to purchase a shiny new Spay and Neuter license plate!

Thank you, Florida Animal Friend, for your incredible support and for protecting the safety and future of all animals.

As many of you saw on social media yesterday, Clay County Animal Care & Control flooded after Hurricane Irma. Their dedicated staff worked tirelessly to save every animal – some of them even swimming dogs and cats to safety. Thanks to the generosity of our community far and wide, JHS had empty kennels for emergency situation just like this one.

We want to extend our gratitude to each and every donor who has supported JHS and supported our campaign for the new building. Without this building in place – we would not have have been able to help our Clay County friends. If you would like to help us continue our lifesaving mission after Hurricane Irma, simply click here:

This life-saving collaboration would not have been possible without our friends from Lynchburg Humane Society and Cat Depot, who took in our animals prior to the storm. Thank you, also, to PetSmart Charities and Petco Foundation for helping with supplies, and First Coast No More Homeless Pets for loaning us their truck.

A world of thanks to the generous Storm Trooper families who took in any remaining JHS pets prior to the storm. Your generosity in emptying those kennels saved more lives than you know! Thank you also to the team at Auld & White Constructors, LLC for helping us get into the new building prior to the storm and securing the construction site. Let’s give a round of a-paws to our volunteers and team members who left their homes yesterday to help get the Clay pets settled into their new temporary home.

And thank you to our JHS fans, far and wide, for your online support. Your positive messages and kind words are keeping us uplifted as we wade through the muck left in Irma’s wake.

We know that many of you want to know when you can adopt the Clay County pets who weathered the storm – we will keep you posted. 

PLEASE NOTE: JHS remains in disaster response mode, we will post as soon as normal operations resume.

Jacksonville, you are a compassionate and resilient city. You always have been. You always will be. Never forget – generosity breeds joy!

Flooding at Clay County Animal Care & Control caused by Hurricane Irma.

Flooding at Clay County Animal Care & Control’s adoption center caused by Hurricane Irma.

CCAC trucks heading to JHS with evacuated animals.

CCAC evacuated animals arriving at JHS!

Volunteer, Steve, and JHS Team Member, Kristy, unloading one of the 33 cats who were evacuated to JHS.

JHS Team Members Kristy, Nikki and Dr. Hill helping transport the cats from Clay County into the new building at JHS.

A three month old kitten waiting to be placed in a dry kennel at JHS.

Team Member Suzy gives some love to the Clay County kittens!

JHS volunteer Kelly helping walk dogs into the new JHS Adoption, Education & Community Resource Center.

JHS Team Member Cole is happy to helping these Clay County pups get to dry land at JHS!

These Clay County dogs will be some of the very first to live in our brand-new kennels at the JHS Adoption, Education & Community Resource Center!

Hooray! All animals were evacuated thanks to the hard work of the Clay County staff, and thanks to our donors and friends, JHS was able to shelter 26 dogs and 33 cats.

Team JHS. Goodbye Irma!


Sunny days are coming and it’s time to put on your flip flops and hit the beach! Heat and pets, however, don’t always mix. Here are 7 simple steps you can take to keep cats and dogs safe in the hot weather:

1 – Leave Pets At Home

Your pets don’t want to wait in the car while you run errands – they’d rather be at home in the cool air conditioning! The inside of your car can reach upwards of 20 degrees higher than the temperature outside in just a few minutes. Cracked windows and shade from trees do not provide enough relief and your pet is at risk from suffering a fatal heat stroke. When it comes to pets, staying at home is best!


2 – Provide Lots of Water

Your dog and cat will need some extra hydration when the weather warms up. Make sure to fill that water dish and keep it full! If you are taking your pet on an outdoor adventure, bring water and a portable container with you. Ocean, lake or river water contains bacteria and other contaminates that can harm your pet – it’s best to bring a supply from home instead! Providing extra water can be fun, too. Try our 3-Step DIY Pupsicle to keep your pooch happy and cool.




3 – Keep Coats Long

You might be tempted to give your pet a buzz cut in the summer months. A short trim is fine, but shaving your pet can result in sunburn and bug bites. Brushing your dog or cat can help to remove excess fur and keep them feeling fine in the summertime.


4 – Avoid Pavement When Possible

Of course, your dog will still need to go for walks each day, but keep them shorter during the hotter times of day. Don’t let your pet linger on hot pavement or asphalt – that can lead to burns on the pads of paws. Ouch!


5 – Fireworks and Pets Don’t Mix

Fireworks are a lot of fun … for humans. Loud noises and bright lights can scare many pets, leaving them lost and disoriented. Find an escape-proof room in your house for your dog or cat during firework displays, and enjoy the Fourth of July with your favorite people, not your pets!

6 – Don’t Skip Flea & Heartworm Prevention

Heartworms are transmitted by mosquitoes, and mosquitoes thrive in the warm weather. To be safe, it’s best to keep your pets on heartworm prevention year round. Heartworms are a preventable, but left untreated, they are fatal. The Jacksonville Humane Society Animal Hospital can provide you with affordable options to protect your pets. Click here for more information.


7 – Know When to Act

Keeping your pets cool in the summer time is the best way to avoid heat stroke, which can be fatal. It’s important to pet owners to know the signs, which include heavy panting, glazed eyes, a rapid heartbeat, difficulty breathing, excessive thirst, lethargy, fever, dizziness, lack of coordination, profuse salivation, vomiting, a deep red or purple tongue, seizure, and unconsciousness. If you see these signs in your pet, immediately contact a veterinarian.


Take these simple steps to keep your dog or cat safe in the hot summer months ahead! And don’t forget, if you’re looking to add a new family member this summer, the Jacksonville Humane Society is open 7 days a week for pet adoptions.


Read More About Summer Safety and Pets:

ASPCA Hot Weather Tips Summer Pet Safety