Tri-County Humane Society

St. Cloud, Minnesota

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About Tri-County Humane Society

Tri-County Humane Society is an independently run non-profit animal shelter in St. Cloud, Minnesota dedicated to providing animals of the area with the shelter, care, love, and affection they need. They believe in the bond between animals and humans, and they show it by providing excellent adoption programs and educational services.

Founded in 1974, this organization has committed almost 50 years to the care of homeless animals in need, reuniting lost pets with their owners, humane behavior education, educating individuals on being responsible pet owners, and adoption services. They're there to provide answers on pet care, behavior, or other related questions.

Tri-County Humane Society comes from humble beginnings. The shelter started with just 10 old kennels, 12 cages for puppies, and 12 for kitties. They were located in a high-flood area, so the likelihood that water would seriously damage the building was high. However, they beat the odds, and today they’ve added many additional buildings, including a clinic and a surgery room!

Contact Info

735 8th Street NE
St. Cloud
(320) 252-0896

Hours of Operation

12:00 pm - 5:00 pm every day

Adoption Process

The steps to complete an adoption process at Tri-County Humane Society are as follows:

  1. Make sure your neighborhood association, homeowner’s association, or lease allow for a pet.
  2. Visit the shelter’s website and browse through the pets available for adoption.
  3. Choose the pup, kitty, or cute critter you want to make into your new favorite furry friend.
  4. Call the shelter and make an appointment to meet the pet in question. The shelter requires that you do this before you fill out a pre-adoption application. They also recommend that you place a deposit on the animal you want to adopt. Pets are adopted very fast at this shelter!
  5. Pile your whole family in the car (including your other pets!) and go to the shelter. You’re going to want your pet to meet the whole gang before it can make up its mind to go home with you.
  6. Talk to the staff about the animal and they’ll help you decide whether the animal is right for you and your family. If everything sounds good, a member of their adoption staff will review your application, and you can take your new family member home with you!

The pre-adoption application is located here.

Adoption Fees

Adoption fees at Tri-County Humane Society vary from pet to pet and range from $5-$500 depending on the animal's species, age, and adoptability. Adults 55+ years old, veterans, and military personnel don't have to pay adoption fees if they show proper identification.

Your adoption fee covers spaying/neutering, age-appropriate vaccinations, deworming, a basic examination, a free behavior evaluation, and a 24PetWatch microchipping.

Adoption Process & Fees

Our writing team is hard at work researching this shelter's adoption process and fees, so this page will be updated soon!

In the meantime, here's some nice-to-know info that applies to nearly every animal shelter, humane society, and rescue.

Why Rescue A Shelter Dog?

Because shelter dogs are full of love!

Is it because they know you saved them and love you harder for it?

I can't say for certain, but yes.

Jokes aside, there are three things all shelter dogs need to thrive in their new home:

  1. Love
  2. Patient
  3. Training

Older shelter dogs, generally 1+ years old, may have experienced a lot of trauma, which often results in one of 8 common behavioral issues:

  1. Anxiety
  2. Aggression toward people & pets
  3. Resource guarding
  4. Destructive behavior
  5. Housetraining regression
  6. Poor social skills
  7. Leash reactivity & barrier-related aggression
  8. Constant whining

These issues are correctable! Your dog isn't broken, they're just damaged. You can fix them with enough love, patience, and a good training plan.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, finding good dog trainers can be hard. Like everything else, dog training is moving only. but there are great online dog trainers that are proven to work and can help get your new pup on the right path.

Animal Shelter vs Humane Society vs Rescue: What's the Difference?

You can learn a lot about an animal welfare organization just by looking at their name.

Animal Shelters

  • Most Animal Shelters are city or county-run organizations, often operated by the local Animal Control department, that manage strays and handle owner surrenders.
  • They usually have kennel facilities you can visit to adopt animals, and they usually have less stringent adoption requirements, lower adoption fees, and same-day adoptions (because their goal is to get animals out of the shelter).
  • Unfortunately, they usually know very little about each animal, including their true personalities and any behavioral problems.

Humane Societies

  • Most Humane Societies are non-profit organizations, many of which are no-kill shelters.
  • Some (but not all) are affiliated with The Humane Society of the United States.
  • They exist to improve animal welfare in the local community and often partner with city or county-run Animal Shelters that often euthanize animals due to capacity restraints.
  • They usually have kennel facilities, sometimes at multiple locations, and usually offer other services to the community such as low-cost spay/neuter clinics, community education programs, and more.
  • They may also have some animals in foster care.
  • There's a lot of variation in process and fees among Humane Societies, but they usually have really good websites that detail everything for you.


  • Most Rescues are foster-based organizations that don't have physical facilities.
  • They usually have websites and contact emails, but not all of them have phone numbers.
  • Because they don't have a physical facility, you need to view animals in their foster network online, usually on their website but sometimes on their member pages on either PetFinder or Adopt-a-Pet.
  • If you see an animal you'd like to meet, contact the rescue using the process listed on their website or via email. They'll help you through the application process and set up a time for you to meet the animal at the foster's home.
  • Adopting from a rescue generally is the most expensive option here and takes the longest, but you get an animal that's been cared for in a loving home environment and their foster can tell you a lot about their personality.

6 Tips to Improve Your Adoption Experience

Adoption processes vary drastically from organization to organization, but here are some general tips that apply in most instances. Note that we'll use the term "shelters" here for simplicity but it includes all types of rescue organizations.

  1. See an animal online that you'd like to meet? Call the shelter before your visit to make sure the animal is still available. This especially applies for puppies, which are adopted out quickly.
  2. Usually, you'll need to get some paperwork in order: a photo ID, vaccination/medical records for any pets you currently have, possibly your vet's contact info and a couple of personal references, and (for renters) proof you're allowed to have a pet (copy of your lease or your landlord's contact info).
  3. If you need to provide contact info for your vet, let your vet know ahead of time. Otherwise, they may not release your information.
  4. Many shelters require your current dogs to meet adoptive dogs. Your current dogs need to be up-to-date on vaccinations.
  5. Some shelters require you to schedule a home visit to ensure a suitable living environment for the new animal.
  6. Adoption fees may seem excessive, but they're actually amazing values. Truthfully, caring for a pet is expensive. Most adoption fees include required medical care to get the animal ready for their new home including (but not limited to) spay/neuter surgery, vaccinations, general vet exams, flea/tick treatment, deworming, heartworm testing/treatment for dogs, and feline leukemia and feline AIDS testing/treatment for cats. In general, your adoption fee is less than the cost of this care, so you're saving money in addition to your new animal's life!

If you have any questions about adopting an animal (what you'll need, what to expect, etc.) feel free to contact the PetLists team!

For more information about what's included in your adoption fee, or any other questions about the adoption process, reach out to
Tri-County Humane Society
St. Cloud
directly using the contact info above.

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All information on this page is accurate and up-to-date to the best of our knowledge. If you spot an error, please contact us using our contact form.
Note: Hours of operation and other information on this page are subject to change during the COVID-19 pandemic.