The Humane Society of Tampa Bay was established in 1912 as the Hillsborough County Humane Society with the mission “to enforce the law applicable to the prevention of cruelty to children and cruelty to all animals of any description, capable of suffering, and to do everything and anything which is legal to prevent cruelty and harsh treatment to children and animals.” It is one of the oldest corporations in the state of Florida.
In 1926, the organization was left a bequest by two sisters, Allison and Helen M. Holland, of the property and a two story house on 3607 N. Armenia. In 1929, the animal shelter began operations using the declaration, “We speak for those who cannot speak for themselves.”
In the 1970’s, the organization outgrew the original house and the current facility was built, however it was not until the early 1980’s, that the Holland house was demolished and the facility was enlarged to include the kennels.
In 2000, The Humane Society of Tampa Bay, realizing the importance of spaying and neutering animals in the community due to the overpopulation problem, opened the Spay and Neuter Clinic. In 2004, the Humane Society of Tampa Bay began the “No Kill for Space” program which means that no adoptable animal is euthanized to make room for another coming through the door. We do euthanize animals that are too sick to be treated or too aggressive or behaviorally unsound to be suitable for adoption. The Humane Society of Tampa Bay is a managed admission shelter. We only accept animals that we feel we can adopt. We do not take in stray animals. They need to be taken to the county facility where their owners can look for them.
We at the Humane Society of Tampa Bay do our best to find homes for as many animals as possible. We are committed to a community approach to help lower the euthanasia rate in our county. We have an aggressive transfer program which takes in animals from other shelters that are open admission and house animals that are at risk of being euthanized.
In January 2007 HSTB joined the ASPCA, No More Homeless Pets, Animal Coalition of Tampa, and Hillsborough County Animal Services in the ASPCA® Mission: Orange™, a mutual mission to create a humane community where every adoptable dog and cat is guaranteed a loving home and where all animals are treated with respect and kindness.
In 2008, HSTB opened a Wellness Clinic and began offering veterinary services at affordable rates to owned pets in the community.
In 2012, our Wellness and Spay/Neuter clinics were expanded to a full-service, high-quality, affordable veterinary hospital located in our 10,000+ square foot state-of-the-art Animal Health Center. The veterinary hospital is open to the public seven days a week performing more than 11,000 spay/neuter surgeries and seeing more than 25,000 pets each year. In 2014 the Animal Health Center became the first non-profit veterinary hospital in Florida to be accredited by American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA).
For more than 100 years, we have helped over a million animals who have crossed through our doorway thanks to generous people in our community who have funded our work through donations and bequests.