Pet Haven in History

Pet Haven in History

What sets Pet Haven apart from other organizations? 


There is a lot of love to go around in Minnesota for pets!

We are so lucky. Our area is rich in rescue and philanthropy. 

What does this mean? 

Minnesota has approximately 40,979 registered 501c3 non-profit organizations and approximately 469 of those registered non-profits are animal welfare and rescue related. 

Pet Haven has had a historical presence on this landscape since 1952 and is the third-oldest animal welfare group in Minnesota!

Minnesota Humane Society (not to be confused with the current Animal Humane Society) is the oldest; established in 1869. MNHS still operates today but does not have a shelter.

In 1978 the Minneapolis Society for the Prevention of Cruelty (to animals and children) was established. This organization was formally incorporated as the Minneapolis Humane Society in 1891 and went on to become the Animal Rescue League in 1916. In 1965 this organization rebranded as the Animal Humane Society of Hennepin County.

All of these organizations were operating what is known as a traditional municipal shelter. All but Pet Haven. In 1952 we incorporated to become the first Foster-based organization in Minnesota. 

St. Paul Municipal Shelter opened in 1954

Foster-based rescue seems completely normal to all of us, but imagine what rebels Pet Haven looked like in 1952. “Take pets out of shelters? Rehabilitate them and find families for them?” Pet Haven founders were outliers, and disrupters, challenging conventional matters and ways of doing things. Thank goodness these founding members were risk-takers. All you have to do is look at the ripple effect of this disruption to see the benefits – thousands of pets’ lives saved! 

Pet Haven is still challenging conventional ways of doing things and that is what sets us apart from others. We are dedicated to the pets that are here in Minnesota. We prioritize not just physical health but emotional wellbeing. We are committed to keeping our pets out of the sheltering/rescue system by carefully matchmaking supporting fosters and adopters as long as they need. 

We recognize environmental stress is real and this is why we pay so much attention to placing our pets with families that will meet their emotional and environmental needs. We measure our success by our return rate which is under 2%. 

Once pets arrive in our care they immediately become family and will always have a safe place to land. We also take every pet, every family member, back if needed. We do not clog up the sheltering/rescue system. We are committed to our pets, our family!

Thank you for being a part of the Pet Haven Family!