The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) does far more than operate shelters nationwide, they also do their best to keep pets from entering the shelter system at all.
Their Pets For Life program targets high-risk, low-income communities and provides education, supplies and veterinary services to keep pets safe, healthy, and at home where they belong.
Community Outreach is a fundamental principle of the Pets for Life program. Amanda and this wonderful family are a beautiful example of “peak outreach.” 🙂
One in six Americans are currently living below the poverty line, and in communities where poverty strikes the hardest, close to 60% of pets have never seen a veterinarian. Pets For Life reaches out to the people in these under-served areas providing compassion and support.
The goal is not to just swoop into the community and toss around a few pamphlets before heading out again. Pets For Life is committed to spending as much time as necessary to build trust and truly make a meaningful, lasting impact on the people as well as the pets. The HSUS website reads:
Pets for Life embraces the human component of the human-animal equation by approaching people in a respectful way and recognizing that people’s love for their pets transcends socioeconomic circumstances and cultural differences.
PAWS for Life Englewood client Ms. Pugh had her new dog Jack Jack neutered through our program today. Jack Jack’s pit…
After an in-depth community assessment, the Pets For Life team determines what the major needs are for the pets and their owners. They then get to work providing services like dog training, spay/neuter surgeries, vaccinations, pet supplies and general wellness care – all at no cost to the owners.
For those community members who have difficulty with transportation, the team will even pick up and return the pets after their appointments. Those struggling to feed their pets are provided with food, not to mention leashes, collars, flea medication, heartworm prevention – whatever is needed.
Pets For Life is currently active all over the country in communities like Los Angeles, Atlanta, Baltimore, Chicago, Philadelphia, and recently, Charleston, SC. See a full list of cities served here.
Many other independent rescue groups have been inspired by the Humane Society’s efforts to create similar outreach programs, all with the same goal in mind: to keep pets out of shelters and in the loving arms of the humans who cherish them.
Featured Image via Facebook/AnimalFriends