• Susan Houser

Montmorency County, MI

Montmorency County, Michigan, is located in the northern part of Michigan’s lower peninsula, and has about 10,000 residents. Up until 2009, the county sheriff’s office handled animal control. The Elk Country Animal Shelter (ECAS) is a 501(c)(3) organization that supported the county shelter for years and finally took it over entirely in April 2009. Animals were kept in outdoor kennels at the sheriffs office and ECAS’s first order of business was to create a shelter building where the animals could be indoors. The shelter accepts owner surrenders and does not list any restrictions on surrenders on its website.


Here are the live release rates for the county as reported to the state of Michigan for the four years since ECAS took over the shelter:

  1. 2009 — 97%

  2. 2010 — 97%

  3. 2011 — 97%

  4. 2012 — 97%

The shelter’s mission was endangered in 2012 when a contract dispute with the county caused ECAS to stop formally taking in strays. Volunteers for the shelter went out on their own time and rescued strays and took them to a neighboring shelter. Fortunately the dispute only lasted a couple of weeks, and on April 11, 2012 the county approved the funding asked for by the shelter.

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