Follow Us
About Us

Our building exterior in Middleburg, FLMission Statement

The mission of Safe Animal Shelter is to provide a temporary safe haven for abused, abandoned, lost and unwanted cats and dogs until adopted into a permanent home, and to advocate spay/neuter as the only means to control animal overpopulation.

A Home Until
They Find A Home

Safe Animal Shelter is Clay County's oldest no-kill shelter, created for the purpose of preserving and providing quality of life for lost, abandoned, abused and unwanted pets. The first facility opened in Orange Park in the summer of 1991 and continued to operate at that location until moving to a new facility in Middleburg, December 6, 2003. Since its inception, Safe Animal Shelter has provided loving care to over 11,000 cats and dogs until adopted into forever homes.

Shelter interiorAll rescued animals at the Safe Animal Shelter are provided food, shelter, loving care, attention, socialization, recreation, exercise and quality medical treatment. Medical treatment includes vaccinations, spay/neuter, heartworm treatment, corrective surgery and other needed services. Once residents are recovered and ready for adoption, they are placed in carefully screened permanent homes.

Safe Animal Shelter receives no government funding. Homeless cats and dogs are provided quality care only through private donations from individuals, groups and businesses.

Our History

From 1982 to 1990, Clay Humane operated a veterinary clinic and animal shelter. In 1990, the organization decided to close the shelter to exclusively focus on offering low-cost spay/neuter surgeries as well as other veterinary services. But a dedicated group of volunteers believed a no-kill shelter provided a much needed community service. There were more pets entering Clay County shelters than were being adopted. And unfortunately, healthy pets were being euthanized because there simply was not enough room to house them.

To provide housing for more homeless pets in the community until they could find a forever home, Safe Animal Shelter was formed in 1991 as a 501 (c) (3) non-profit corporation registered with the state of Florida. View our most current 990 Form (Fiscal year 3/2013 - 2/2014). It became the first no-kill shelter in Clay County. The shelter opened in Orange Park, Florida that year and operated in that location until December 6, 2003 when we moved into our new building in Middleburg, Florida.

Safe Animal Shelter's new facility houses between 50 and 60 dogs and about 60 to 70 cats at one time. Since inception, we have provided loving care to over 13,600 cats and dogs until they were adopted into loving homes.


Animal Intake By Appointment OnlyWe have very limited space at our shelter since we consistently operate at, or above, capacity. Before you consider surrendering your pet, please look at all other options.

If there are behavior issues, please research trainers in the area. Many training videos are also available online. Most dogs can be trained with consistent practice and patience. If your time is limited, look into having a friend, relative or professional stop by while you are gone to interact with your pet(s). Perhaps money is an issue, which is becoming increasingly common. Look into our area’s low-cost veterinary services and clinics. Discuss options with your vet.

If the decision is inevitable, please know that you must make an appointment at Safe Animal Shelter to surrender your pet. DO NOT ABANDON ANY ANIMAL ON OUR PROPERTY OR ANYWHERE. Please call (904) 276-7233 to schedule an admissions appointment or email us. Remember, we may not always have space. Prepare for your appointment by having all of your pet's veterinary history, medical records and medications it may be taking. A surrender fee will be due at the time of your appointment.

If your situation is dire, you can call Clay County Animal Control at (904) 269-6342 | map