Humane Society of Truckee-Tahoe expands reach

Submitted to the Tribune

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — The pandemic has led to an unprecedented number of animals in need, and the Humane Society of Truckee-Tahoe is expanding its reach to help shelters from all over the country.

The HSTT has always been committed to saving and helping 100% of the pets in the Truckee-Tahoe area, as well as helping many other shelters whenever possible. In 2021 the HSTT worked with 30 different shelters around the country, rescuing more than 400 animals in the process.

“Shelters everywhere are full, some well beyond capacity, and here in California pets are entering shelters at rates we haven’t seen in years,” said Erin Ellis, HSTT’s community engagement director, in a news release. “The need everywhere is great.”

Last year, the HSTT helped other shelters in California during the Caldor Fire — not only assisting with staff and volunteers in the Douglas County evacuation shelter, but also transferring pets from the Douglas County and El Dorado County animal shelters to Truckee to make space for pets during the South Lake Tahoe evacuation. HSTT also assisted Texas shelters during their cold-weather crisis.

Helping pets and families far and wide

70% of animals helped by HSTT came from shelters outside of the Tahoe region.

More than 50% of the families who adopted pets from HSTT live outside of the Tahoe region.

In one 4-day stretch in November, HSTT transferred a total of 49 pets — animals that otherwise may not have made it out of their current shelter.

How you can help

The HSTT is looking for volunteers to participate in its foster program. This is a vital, life-saving effort that provides a temporary home for animals that are transferring into HSTT’s care.

A foster family provides a nurturing environment for pets who are awaiting their forever homes. The program caters to what works best for the foster and their home setting, allowing fosters to choose whether they want to temporarily take in dogs, cats, puppies or kittens. HSTT provides all the support and supplies that are needed, and the foster provides love and care to an animal in need.

If you’d like to learn more about the program and how to become a foster family, please reach out to Samantha Laroche, foster program manager, at

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