Helping Paws Animal Shelter



Click HERE to donate

To see each individual piece, go to the Art for the Paws Facebook page at:

Click HERE to register -

scroll down & select Helping Paws Animal Shelter as your cause

Click HERE to download and print Raffle Tickets

Please watch this heartwarming and beautiful video by professional photographer Linda Gordon and think about supporting Helping Paws this holiday season... We rely upon the support of our donors to keep our doors open and help the stray and abandoned animals that are entrusted in our care.  Happy Holidays.

Click HERE to view

  Running for a Cause

The 8th Annual Panting for Paws 5K Run/Walk and 1 Mile Fun Run was a great success.  A total of 326 Runners registered for the 5K, which took place at 9 am on November 2 at Lippold Park on a sunny but chilly morning.  The event raised over $16,000 for Helping Paws and we can’t thank everyone enough for their support. 

Top Male Winner was Dan Palmer from Roscoe, IL and Top Female was Jennifer Wickersty from Crystal Lake.  I would like to give a special shout out to Tommy Nitz of Lake in the Hills, age 7, competing again adult runners and finishing 29th!  Way to go Tommy. 

We would also like to thank all of our sponsors and ask that you please frequent their businesses.  Our vendors:  Buddy’s Dog House, The Running Depot, Crystal Lake Family Wellness, Quiglees and Sweaters-n-Sweets.  Everyone who donated baskets and basket raffle items, collected additional donations (thank you Grace Baran, age 10, who ran a lemonade stand so she could donate $30 to the race) and all the volunteers from Helping Paws, who tirelessly set up, managed, showed some of our adoptable dogs and stayed to cleaned up after the event. 

Thank you everyone for making the 15th annual Paws in the Park one to put in the record books! Our cats and dogs are wagging their tails and so happy to receive such wonderful support from the community!

Well, everything has been tallied and we are happy to report that Paws in the Park Walk & Pet Fest had another successful year! Over $13,000 was raised and 103 individual registrations this year, making it the best attended event yet! About 20 of those registrations had multiple dogs and we had probably over 200 people in attendance at Emricson Park in Woodstock.

Part of the mission of the Paws in the Park event is to have participants reach out to others and ask for additional donations to help the shelter. We are proud to announce that the 'Top Dog’ for 2014 is Polaris Armbrecht with her guardian Kim, raising $263 to help the animals. Thank you Polaris and Kim!

We'd also like to thank all of our sponsors and vendors who came out for the day to share their knowledge and products/services with everyone. A special thanks to...Robin and Elizabeth Bengston from Robin’s Dog Stars and their dogs, Cedar and Slater for the wonderful dog tricks demonstration; Chaplain Randy Wakitsch who graciously did all the Pet Blessings, all who donated baskets, gift certificates and items to our raffle (our best one yet!) and all the volunteers, from Helping Paws and students from McHenry West HS Key Club, who tirelessly set up, managed and broke down the event.


We are so excited and want to give a big shout out to everyone who voted for us!

 We have been named "Best Animal Shelter/Rescue Group" for the 3rd year in a row in the best of the Fox Daily Reader's Poll. You also voted Panting for Paws our 5K run, "Favorite 5K." We feel truly honored.

Thank you for supporting us and our mission. Thank you to all our adopters, donors, sponsors and volunteers. We could not do it without you.




Not on our e-newsletter list?

Sign up today and get our complimentary, inspiring, informative e-newsletter.


Click HERE to sign-up


Click HERE to see prior  months/years newsletters.







A big 'paws up' to everybody who voted for Helping Paws.

We appreciate your support for us and the animals of McHenry County. 

Who's your dog's MAMA?

Well in few weeks, you could know! Buy one of our Mars mixed breed dog kits, use the simple cheek swab and you will find your dog's breed ancestry. Although it says Mixed Breed kit, It can also verify that your dog is a purebred.  These kits normally retail for $80 or more at Petco and Petsmart, we can offer them to you for $65 and there is no waiting on shipping. Come on in to the Shelter and pick one up today.

We Recommend - Hill's Pet Food Official Logo - Hill's Nutrition Official Badge

Helping Paws is funded solely through donations.  Please help us save the stray dogs and cats that come to us for help. A gift of any amount will help in the lives of these wonderful animals.

Follow Us........





Helping Paws Animal Shelter

Open Every Day 12 pm (noon) - 4 pm

Tuesdays & Thursdays open until 7 pm

2500 Harding Lane
Woodstock, IL 60098
Phone: (815)338-4400

Map to our shelter

Fox Valley Helping Paws Animal Welfare Association, a non-profit 501(C)(3) organization, was founded in 1971. Helping Paws is a no-kill animal shelter for stray and abandoned dogs and cats in McHenry County and surrounding areas. The animals are provided a sanctuary where they receive medical care, spaying or neutering, daily care and love, and the opportunity to be adopted by a responsible owner.