DCAS Has Big News!

Newsletter BannerA message from our Veterinarian Administrator


Great news - last week our incredibly supportive County Board approved us for a new addition! Construction on our current site will start March 2023 and will first consist of a 10,000 sq ft addition (basically doubling our current space) and then a portion of the existing building will be remodeled. Special thanks to our Chairman, Dan Cronin, who made helping animals a high priority and to our Animal Services Committee Chair, Brian Krajewski, who cared and listened to past challenges and created a path for success at the shelter.

With the help of dedicated volunteers, hardworking staff, and caring adopters and rescue groups we have been steadily increasing the number of animals saved each year. Last year, our save rate was 89%, which is incredible for an open-admission, municipal shelter where we accept animals near the end of their life or who were neglected or mistreated. Each year, we strive to develop new, creative programs to save more and more animals, but we are incredibly limited by our current space.

Thanks to our compassionate County leadership and an engaged community, we will be able to improve the living conditions and quality of care for the great variety of species we see. In the 5 years I have been here, we have seen not only cats, dogs and bunnies, but also reptiles, birds, arachnids, amphibians, rodents, and other mammals (from guinea pigs to goats). All these animals need specialized diets and custom housing - both which require a lot of space. If you have spent more than 30 seconds in our shelter, you are already aware of our desperate need for space.

The new shelter design will allow DuPage County Animal Services to:

  • Provide modern, stress-reducing, and healthy housing for animals.
  • Allow the shelter to have more welcoming and appropriate spaces for the public to be counseled on services and solutions with animals.
  • Expand opportunities for residents to benefit from animal related educational and training classes.
  • Provide more functional and supportive spaces for staff and volunteers.
  • Create a more public, warm, and inviting place that promotes volunteerism, adoption, fostering, humane education, and sense of community for people that love animals.
  • Provide the best care and find the best outcomes for animals.
Rendering of New Shelter Building

The time is now for us to provide a welcoming resource center which will allow us to more fully serve the animals and residents of DuPage County and beyond. Click on the rendering of our new shelter to learn more about helping us reach our funding goals.

Dr. Hanek Signature

Dr. Barbara Hanek,

Veterinarian Administrator

The Interns are Back in Town!

After a hiatus due to the pandemic, DuPage County Animal Services is happy to welcome back our intern program. 

Rachel R is working towards a Bachelor of Science in Biology at the College of DuPage and plans to go on to veterinary school after graduation. She chose to intern with DuPage County Animal Services to get a different perspective on animal care. Rachel is especially interested in learning more about animal behavior in a real life setting. She likes all kinds of different animals, but if she had to choose her favorite, would choose dogs. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her pug Kirie and drawing.

Rachel R headshot
Becky L headshot

Becky L just completed her Bachelor of Science at the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana and will continue her education through their veterinary program in the fall. She has worked with animals in various capacities over the years, volunteering with rescues and participating in U of I's wildlife vet clinic. With so many animals to choose from, Becky couldn't pick just one favorite - meerkats for wild animals and guinea pigs for domestic animals. She is especially interested in learning about the shelter's daily operations and how DCAS cares for animals and community members. When Becky isn't at the shelter, you'll probably find her singing to her chiweenie, Farrah. 

This Sharp Pencil Makes a Good Point

Pencil the Rabbit

Some animals who come to DCAS struggle to show their true personalities in the shelter. Luckily, we have wonderful members of the community who help us by fostering animals. Getting a break from the stress of the shelter, animals have a better chance to show us who they are and what kind of home they need. Pencil is one challenging case benefiting from our rabbit foster program. 

Pencil is cute as a button but he scoffs at the idea that rabbits are "starter pets." Pencil knows true rabbit people respect their rabbit's personal space and understands how scary being picked up is for most rabbits. This super smart, friendly guy needs time to get to know his people and does better when they go slow. He would do best as a free roam bun where he can explore to his heart's content.

Are you an experienced bunny friend looking for a new family member? Click Pencil's picture to see him having a ball in his foster home!

Giving Cats Confidence

Krystyna with Burt Macklin

Krystyna D has been a volunteer with DCAS since November of 2018. As the self proclaimed "resident crazy cat lady," she's done anything and everything cat volunteering: helping bottle babies, socializing, training, cleaning, marketing, and more. She finds her work with "hard" cats especially rewarding, becoming a part of their story and helping them succeed in finding a family.

One of Krysyna's recent favorites is Bashful Buddy Casey. Terrified of everything, Casey was super shy and didn't want to interact at all at first. As part of the Jackson Galaxy Cat Pawsitive program, Krystyna worked with Casey to build her confidence in people through positive training interactions. Casey was adopted by the perfect person, ready to build on Krystyna's work in bringing out the true Casey. 

Krystyna wished everyone would take the time to understand cats. So many people think cats are aloof, but that is far from the truth. Cats form unique bonds with their people, and building those bonds can take time. But once they are formed, there is nothing else like the relationship between a cat and their person. Krystyna sees that every day in the work she does with the cats to build their trust. Click on Krystyna and Burt Macklin's photo to see Burt learning how to high five and being rewarded with cuddles! 

Upcoming Events

Cat at computer

Join us at 7pm select Thursday nights all year long! Follow the links provided to register. 

DIY Enrichment – June 16, 2022 7pm-8pm

Bring snacks (for you and your pet) and bring your craft supplies! Create some easy enrichment items for your furry friends!

Registration Link: https://bit.ly/3tuIPKE


Are you Ready for a Red-Eared Slider? – July 7, 2022 7pm-8pm

Many families add red-eared slider turtles to their home during the summer. But what do these aquatic animals need? Learn all about these animals and how to care for them.

Registration Link: https://bit.ly/3NfAeno


Basic Pet First Aid – July 21, 2022 7pm-8pm

Learn how to tend to your pet in a crisis. This presentation will cover preventative care, how to treat wounds, broken bones, choking, and more.

Registration Link: https://bit.ly/3FRUrgN