The Effingham County Humane Society answered a “help me” call recently that put 11 dogs and puppies in the shelter’s care.

Operations Manager Karen Grupe said the Humane Society received a call from an area homeowner who owned 15 canines, all of which needed a variety of veterinary care. Grupe said the dog owner, whom she would not identify, kept four of the small dogs.

Grupe said of the 11 rescued dogs, a 6-week-old puppy named Pearl did not survive, dying from parvo, a highly contagious virus that especially affects puppies. It affects the canine’s ability to absorb nutrients and is often spread through a dog’s fecal matter.

“It’s not fair that Pearl didn’t make it,” Grupe said. “Our goal is to reduce even a small suffering for all animals. With this type of thing, we have an opportunity to educate the community on how to give proper care for their animals.”

Grupe said the only veterinary care the 15 animals have received is “what they could get at the store.” This means the dogs had no rabies shots, no heart worm tests or prevention, no parvo and distemper vaccines and no flea control.

All of the rescued dogs are currently receiving their much-need vet care and are expected to be ready for adoption in the coming weeks. Grupe said the shelter currently has five of the dogs in quarantine at the vet, and four are located in the shelter.

Of the animals rescued, Pearl’s siblings, Hansel and Gretel survive; however, Grupe said on Monday that one of the two pup’s outlook is grim. Grupe invites the community to donate a gift, monetary or supplies, in Pearl’s honor to help her siblings, the other of the 11 dogs and the other canines at the shelter.

Grupe said the situation the 15 dogs were in was due to a form of hoarding, and many of the animals were still intact, allowing constant breeding to occur. She added that the owner loves the animals but quickly became overwhelmed with their care.

Grupe said for the four animals remaining in the care of the homeowner, the Human Society assisted with food and veterinary care. She said the shelter is still wanting to rescue more of the dogs in the home.

“For some, they just need help getting to afford vet care and are needing education to care for their animals,” Grupe said. “As per our mission statement, our goal is to ... promote responsible pet ownership, which includes spaying (and) neutering pets, appropriate pet identification, proper pet care and the quality adoption of homeless pets.”

Grupe said anyone wanting to apply for the adoption of one of the 10 dogs or any canine or cat in the shelter should contact the Effingham County Humane Society at 217-536-9001 or stop by the shelter in person at 12073 N. 1000th Rd.

The shelter is typically open Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Grupe said the shelter will be closed this Thursday for the Thanksgiving holiday.

Kaitlin Cordes can be reached at or 217-347-7151 ext. 132.


Kaitlin Cordes covers Effingham County, police and courts and sports features for the Effingham Daily News. She earned a bachelor's degree in journalism from Eastern Illinois University. Cordes is a native of Effingham.

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