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Our Beginnings

Touching hearts, one paw at a time!

Mary Ann Morris Animal Society (M.A.M.A.S.) was formed in 2001 by a small group of local people concerned about animal welfare in our county.  Until the opening of the shelter, there was no county shelter at all.  M.A.M.A.S. started out with very humble roots – and we are still a very modest facility, but have come a long way since 2001.

Woman kissing Gunner

Our History

Prior to 2001, there were no accomodations for stray animals in Bamberg County, other than a privately owned small shelter started and run by our namesake - Mary Ann Morris.  Mrs. Morris was well known in the area as being a lover of all animals, and spent countless hours saving as many as she could.  Finally, in 2001, a group of locals partnered with the county to start M.A.M.A.S., and the story began.  The first few years were tough - piecing together the bare minimum of what would grow into the shelter as it is today.   Around 2008, M.A.M.A.S. began developing rescue partners in the mid Atlantic and northeast, and soon, the birth of M.A.M.A.S. On The Move Transport, an all volunteer transport  for our dogs, provided transportation out of our area which is overpopulated with unwanted or under cared for animals, and into homes and rescues in areas where they could find safety.  We became a no-kill facility in 2008, and have remained so ever since, with a save rate of between 97-98% consistently.  Our facility has continued to grow, but our emphasis is and always will be the wellbeing of the dogs in our care. 

Who We Are

Despite our physical growth, we are most proud of who we are, and what we do.  Mary Ann Morris Animal Society is now a multi- part operation – consisting of the shelter side, the rescue side, the transport side (M.A.M.A.S. on the Move or MOMT), and the adoption side (Safe Haven Puppy Rescue or S.H.P.R.).  AND, we have become a no-kill facility, which in our area is, pretty miraculous.  Any adoptable dog is taken under M.A.M.A.S. wing.  To clarify, any adoptable dog means any dog who does not show aggressiveness to people and/or other dogs, or who does not have a medical issue that we cannot fix.

Bamberg county budgets $40,000 annually for the operation of the shelter, which in no way begins to cover the cost of our operation.  M.A.M.A.S. is committed to saving lives and helping those who have fallen between life’s cracks.  Our facility remains modest, to say the least – because we choose to dedicate most of the funds we receive through the county, donations and adoptions – to helping more dogs, rather than choosing euthanasia.  We take in – and fix – a number of lost souls – emotionally and physically, which makes us a unique “hybrid” shelter/rescue.  Adoption fees and donations help bridge the gap between what it takes to run our shelter and what we receive from our county.  M.A.M.A.S. will fight for every animal….  Surgeries are performed to correct broken limbs.  Dogs with mange or horribly infected skin conditions are treated and cured. Puppies that have parvo are treated with a VERY high survival rate.  Malnourished and starved dogs are brought back to health. Injured dogs are treated.  All dogs are given time, love and attention to heal – emotionally and physically, and our very dedicated staff is diligent in our adoption/rescue process. 

We are proud of what M.A.M.A.S. has become and strive to do even better in the future….to increase awareness, promote responsible pet ownership, encourage spay/neuter, and make our shelter the best that it can be.  We will continue to push forward to make our shelter a safe, comfortable environment for our residents and give a helping hand to those who need it while we work for them to take that next step into a loving home.  Please join us in our vision!

Dog shaking woman's hand
Front of the M.A.M.A.S. Shelter

The Mary Ann Morris Animal Society (also known as M.A.M.A.S. or MAMAS) started out as a small shelter having only a small portable office building and perimeter fencing.  Gradually, kennels were added, then an addition of a single wide mobile home that was donated by the county – formerly used as part of the prison system.  We have grown substantially since then, but still have a long way to go.  The first office building is now our laundry room (and when needed in special circumstances, we keep dogs there). The single wide trailer is now our puppy building, housing our tiny pups that need special care.  In addition, we have a “new to us” office and intake building, donated by the school system when the new elementary school was built in 2012.  

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