Flood Update


Early on Wednesday, June 26, a water pipe broke under Heartland’s building in Wheeling. The water rose to about two feet throughout the 10,000-square-foot shelter. All 101 animals (25 dogs and 76 cats) were safely evacuated from the building. Within a few hours, they were relocated to other shelters or placed in foster homes. Heartland is forever grateful for outpouring of support from the rescue community and the public. If you are with us, we can endure this challenging time.

Heartland does not expect to move back to the facility until at least the end of August, But this setback will not stop the organization from continuing to save animals. Before the flood, Heartland rescued about 1,000 animals a year, and it’s our priority to support public access shelters like Chicago Animal Care and Control. We rescue animals often overlooked because of their medical or behavioral issues. We remain committed to helping the most vulnerable animals, but we need your help now more than ever. 

LATEST INFORMATION: Follow us on Facebook to find out about adoption popups and other news.

DONATIONS: We need your help caring for our animals and continuing to rescue as many as we can from overcrowded and underfunded public shelters, as well as and starting the long process of rebuilding. 

  • Remember to check whether your company will assist with your donation,

ADOPTIONS: While the shelter is closed, we are still doing adoptions!

  • DOGS: View all of our adoptable dogs here. If you are interested in a particular dog, email dogs@heartlandanimalshelter.org or fill out an application. Meets-and-greets will take place at our temporary adoption center at Signature Aviation, Chicago Executive Airport. 
  • CATS: View all of our adoptable cats here. If you are interested in a particular cat currently in a foster home, please fill out an application or emails cats@heartlandanimalshelter.org  You can also meet many of Heartland’s cats at the Cat Lounge & Boutique.

FOSTERS: We are in desperate need for fosters so we can keep transfering animals out of the city shelter . Please sign up today!

VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES: At this time, we could use help at our satellite cat adoption location at the Cat House.  More opportunities to volunteer will be posted as we get up and running in our other locations. 

SUPPLIES: Please leave all donations at the front door of the shelter (586 Palwaukee Drive in Wheeling) . You can also send donations to Heartland Animal Shelter, 586 Palwaukee Drive, Wheeling, IL 60090. Find our Amazon and Chewy wishlists here. Since we are very short on storage space, we can really use gift certificates so we can purchase items as we need them. (send to “accountant@heartlandanimalshelter.org”)


Jenny Schlueter
Executive Director
847-296-6400 x1010


So many people and organizations have helped us since the flood and we are forever grateful. We can’t thank everyone but here are just a few of those who have shown their love for our animals. 


None of the 101 dogs and cats at the shelter a. the time of the flood were hurt, thanks to the quick thinking of Antun “Tony” Maticic, the WM Waste Management of Illinois sanitation worker who stopped by the shelter to empty the dumpsters. Tony always greeted the cats sitting in the windows at Heartland when he made his morning rounds. On the day of the flood, he noticed more animals than usual staring out at him. When Tony looked more closely, he saw two feet of water inside the shelter and more pouring into the parking lot. Tony immediately called 911. We held a thank-you party for Tony on Thursday, which was attended by his management team, co-workers, and members of the media, including ABC 7, and the Sun-Times  He seemed very touched and made sure to say on camera, “Now we need to get all these animals adopted!”  

Don Levin and the Chicago Wolves donated $5,000 and offered a $5,000 matching donation.
“Helping animals is a big part of what we do and when I heard about this tragedy I knew we had to get involved,” Levin said.

Our neighbors at Waldmann were amazing. In addition, Weber Flavors is storing food and other goods. And Wheeling Fire and Police were first into the shelter to help the animals. They have been checking in on us and even sent pizza!!

Signature Aviation at Chicago Executive Airport invited us to use a vast hangar as a temporary shelter home. We have already set up a medical office and meet-and-greet room for dog adoptions.  

Tree House Humane Society, Anti-Cruelty, and Animal Care League transferred cats displaced during the flood into their  programs. The cats can be adopted directly from these shelters.

The Cat House: Cat Lounge and Boutiquehad just opened in Roselle but it was ready to welcome our cats and help them get adopted. We are so excited about this new partnership

The Best Friends Pet Hotel in Prairie View donated an entire wing for our big boys, Abu and Sarge. They now have a safe place to stay, and staff and volunteers have round-the-clock access to feed and walk them.