Thoughts on FoHCAS and our Mission -- to provide loving care for shelter animals, to raise funds for their medical care and, most importantly, to ensure that no shelter animal is ever euthanized for a treatable medical condition.
FoHCAS’s greatest impact is through the financing of medical treatments for dogs and cats with serious yet treatable health issues that prevent them from being adopted.
Our Board of Directors & Advisors manages the day-to-day operations and requests for assistance, organizes fundraising events, and also serve as FoHCAS volunteers!
Enjoy a brief history of how FoHCAS was formed, and learn about the details of our mission.
Learn about FoHCAS' 2016 merger with Jagger's Dream and how we are keeping Karen Ringhaver's vision alive.
Friends of Hillsborough County Animal Services (FoHCAS) is a nonprofit organization formed to help address the challenges that at-risk animals in the county’s shelter face every day. Our goal is to provide funding for medical services to the surrendered and stray animals in the shelter, increase adoption rates, and provide education to the public to help reduce the euthanasia rate within the Hillsborough County shelter.
We are an all-volunteer organization and rely entirely on donations from our community to obtain the funds necessary to continue our mission. I encourage you to visit our Sponsors Page and consider supporting these civic-minded businesses. Over 90% of monetary donations are directly used for the animals since we have no paid staff and minimal overhead.
Our dedicated volunteers and Board of Directors are the heart of FoHCAS, dedicating their “free” time to our Mission -- to provide loving care for shelter animals, to raise funds for their medical care and, most importantly, to ensure that no shelter animal is ever euthanized for a treatable medical condition.
FoHCAS’s greatest impact is through the financing of medical treatments for dogs and cats with serious yet treatable health issues that prevent them from being adopted. The Medical Assistance program itself is simple. Once an animal has been chosen for adoption, or for an adopt-to-rehome situation, and the medical condition is known, FoHCAS is contacted by the adopter. As long as we have funds, we will say yes to assisting.
1. The animal must originate from Hillsborough County Pet Resource Center (Hillsborough County Shelter)
2. The medical condition must be known at the time of adoption.
3. Medical condition must be treatable. We will not assist with chronic or terminal conditions. We will assist with the payment for biopsies or other diagnostics to determine condition as long as the owner is aware of the above caveat.
4. FoHCAS will not assist with normal, routine medical issues (i.e. yearly exams, shots, monthly heartworm prevention, etc.)
5. FoHCAS must be contacted within a reasonable length of time after animal leaves the shelter. Reasonable usually means within a week, but exceptional circumstances are taken into consideration.
6. Our assistance is based on discounted rescue/non-profit rates.
What we ask in return are a few photos of your pet and a story about why your pet was chosen. Many folks we help will also ask for donations by their friends and family be made to FoHCAS, and almost all people FoHCAS helps donate as their means allow.
Years ago, management, staff and volunteers at Hillsborough County Animal Services saw wonderful animals being euthanized because of treatable medical conditions. We knew there must be a way to help and we also knew our "Village" of animal lovers would help us if they knew how. The idea of a non-profit to serve as a safety net for these animals was born.
Fast forward to 2012, after months of hard work we were granted our 501c3 non-profit determination by the IRS. We were methodically placing the foundation of this new entity we named Friends of Hillsborough County Animal Services, Inc, or FoHCAS. Then a shocking crime pushed us into the public's eye - an innocent animal was buried up to her neck and brutally shot twice in the head. Phoebe, as she was named by her rescuers, a two-year old mix breed dog, miraculously survived due to the efforts of the nationally acclaimed Animal Investigators of Hillsborough County. FoHCAS was asked to hold the reward money that was coming in from the public to find whoever was responsible for this cowardly, horrendous crime. We agreed and even though the reward is still unclaimed to date, we have moved ahead, recognizing the importance of our Mission.
The purpose of the Friends of the Hillsborough County Animal Services (FOHCAS) organization is to help:
· to provide loving care for the shelter’s animals;
· to raise funds for their medical and other care;
· to reduce euthanasia by assisting in the promotion of adoption of shelter animals;
· to promote the humane treatment and care of cats, dogs and other companion animals through the education of the public as to responsible pet ownership.
Our vision of a safety net for the medically needy animals, as well as education and advocacy of those animals, has come to fruition. FoHCAS' volunteers and Board Members come from a variety of backgrounds. Many of us serve as foster homes for rescues, many volunteer also for the shelter and other rescue groups, but we all bring our passion for helping the homeless animals of Hillsborough County to FoHCAS.
In June 2016, Jagger's Dream and FoHCAS decided to pool their resources to become more effective in the community. Both the missions of FoHCAS and Jagger's Dream are closely alighed with each other. . . to provide loving care for shelter animals, to raise funds for their medical care and, most importantly, to ensure that no shelter animal is ever euthanized for a treatable medical condition.
We invite YOU to join us!
Disclaimer – Friends of HCAS, Inc has no legal affiliation with Hillsborough County Animal Services. Friends of HCAS, Inc is an entirely separate nonprofit organization from the county run Animal Services. Friends of HCAS, Inc does not use any tax money & relies solely on donations to assist the animals. Friends of HCAS, Inc is managed by a Board of Directors made up of volunteers, none of whom are employees with Hillsborough County. To contact Hillsborough County Animal Services directly, please call (813) 744-5660.
Jagger's Dream founder, Karyn Ringhaver, was a tireless volunteer at the Hillsborough County Pet Resource Center. Commitment to and compassion for these animals led to her recruiting friends to join her at the shelter. Her vision was to help needy dogs find forever homes and escape the threat of being euthanized.
Karyn's non-profit organization was named after her Yellow Lab, Jagger. Sadly, in 2007, Karyn’s beloved Jagger passed away from bladder cancer. Fueled with a desire to change the lives of some needy shelter dogs, she put her resources to work and began fundraising for the needs of the shelter. In 2008, Karyn and her team of volunteers raised funds and built a dog park at the Hillsborough County Pet Resource Center. The park was for the investigation dogs; dogs who are in litigation for months and maybe even years, with nowhere to run and get exercise; thus "Jagger Park" was established.
Fighting her own battle with leukemia, she still pressed on, volunteering and fundraising to cover the cost of medically needy dogs before her passing on August 19, 2014. The Jagger's Dream team continued with their mission, ensuring positive outcomes for the lives of shelter animals.
In June 2016, Jagger's Dream and FoHCAS decided to pool their resources to become more effective in the community. Both the missions of FoHCAS and Jagger’s Dream are closely aligned with each other…to provide loving care for shelter animals, to raise funds for their medical care and, most importantly, to ensure that no shelter animal is ever euthanized for a treatable medical condition.
To keep Karyn's legacy alive, FoHCAS has establiished a special donation fund, The Karyn Ringhaver Jagger’s Dream Fund. Jagger's Dream donations will be tracked in this new special donation fund. And, donations will continue to be accepted online either through Jagger’s Dream or FoHCAS; checks can continue to be made payable to Jagger’s Dream Fund.
Jagger's Dream and FoHCAS extend our boundless appreciation to you for your past support and are confident that you will continue to support The Karyn Ringhaver Jagger’s Dream Fund through the auspices of FoHCAS. Please continue to hold tightly to your tender heart for the shelter animals…they’re depending on you.
Volunteer Event Coordinator
Previous Executive Board Member
Former Jagger's Dream Executive Board Member
Owner, Tampa Bay Landscaping