Wine and dine for the animals

Estherville Animal Shelter is a no-kill, family run shelter.

Estherville Animal Shelter is a no-kill, family run shelter. Submitted Photo

— There are 60 cats, 25 dogs, chickens, three horses, a goat and three cows living at Estherville Animal Shelter in Greenfield and they all need homes. At Adoptapalooza at the Saratoga Winery on Sunday, Sept. 18, you can learn how to help the furry (and feathery) orphans.

“All fundraisers are important because we get no help from the county, state or anything.

Everything is donations or adoptions and the fundraisers are important because our budget is $2,000 a week outgoing, between payroll, federal taxes, food, electric, just regular household things,” said Muriel Gurren, president of the shelter.

Adoptapalooza will raise money for the family-run shelter through ticket sales ($20 in advance, $25 at the door) and donation drop boxes for pet food and supplies. There will be live music, wine and cheese tasting, raffles and desserts and wood fired pizza available.

Gurren’s mother started the shelter in 1952 with her father (Gurren’s grandfather), so Gurren grew up around the shelter.

“Everyday afterschool that was my job, to feed those dogs. My mother paid me $1 a day. That was a lot of money back then,” said Gurren.

Gurren left town for awhile and got more involved when her mother got older and needed help.

She said the shelter has remained largely the same over the years except for its appearance.

“It’s pretty much the same, just might look different when I show pictures of 40 years ago,” said Gurren. “The buildings are nicer and everything.”


There are separate quarters for cats, dogs and any other animal staying at the shelter.

Since the shelter is no-kill, the animals stay there as long as necessary, which is why it’s basically at capacity.

“Financially, we’re at our peak. Space-wise, our cats we’re at the top, we shouldn’t handle any more than what we have. Our dogs, we really have space for 35 dogs but money-wise and help-wise we can’t,” said Gurren.

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