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  • Writer's pictureSusan Houser

Alpena County, MI

Alpena County is located in the far northern part of Michigan’s lower peninsula, bordering Lake Huron. It is a predominantly rural county with a population of 30,000. The county seat is the city of Alpena, which is a vacation spot with a permanent population of 10,000.

Alpena County has an animal control division that reports to the state of Michigan (scroll down in the link). The Huron Humane Society (HHS), located in the city of Alpena, also reports to the state of Michigan. I spoke to a representative of HHS who told me that they have a contract with the county to take in all the animals transferred by animal control and they take in strays directly from the public. The representative told me that HHS also takes in owner surrenders from the public, subject to a waiting list when the shelter is full. The representative did not know if any exceptions could be made to the waiting list for people who have to surrender an animal immediately. There is a small fee for owner surrenders who are up-to-date on vetting, with a higher fee if HHS will have to supply the vetting.

In 2012, Alpena County animal control reported that it impounded 115 cats and dogs, returned 53 of them to their owners, transferred 57, and euthanized 4. HHS reported an intake of 450 cats and dogs, with a live release rate of 90%. If we combine the statistics for both organizations, the live release rate for the county for 2012 was 91%.

Alpena County is counted in the Running Totals as a 90%+ community.

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