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Reach Underserved Communities

An estimated 23 million pets live in poverty with their people in the Us. Regardless of socio-economic challenges, people care deeply for their animals, but don't always have access to services or struggle to cover the cost. Through innovative programs like Pets For Life we’re meeting people where they are, reaching out proactively to close the gap in animal services and keep animals happy in loving homes. Discover how your organization can provide information and resources to people and pets in the underserved areas of your community.

Spotlight > Reach Underserved Communities

Block by Block

Reaching your community means getting outside your doors and knocking on theirs

Animal Sheltering magazine September/October 2015

Back when Matt Piccone worked for a cable company in Rochester, N.Y., his job was to disconnect people who were stealing service. “I was in and out of 200 yards a day unannounced,” he says. In those yards and back alleys, he found more than illegal cable hookups: He saw dogs tied up all day, animals in need of veterinary care and stray cats struggling to care for their litters.

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  • Blog Post

    Moving Past Assumptions to Better Understand and Support Pet Owners

    Photo by Lee Schilling

    Amanda Arrington, HSUS Pets for Life director, urges the importance of inclusion and access for all pet owners

    Have you ever had a moment when someone you cared about was hurt or upset, and you felt like there was nothing you could do about it? Remember the sense of helplessness you had?
    I do. That sense of watching a loved one suffer and being unable to improve the situation is a horrible feeling. Most of us have experienced it—and unfortunately, people who live in poverty experience it frequently.

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  • Blog Post

    Every Animal Deserves Access to Veterinary Care

    Ms. Smith’s beloved pet Rich, just 10 months after treatment for mange.

    Hear from Inga Fricke on the attack on nonprofit veterinary service providers

    Meet Rich: he’s a playful, loving boy who has been Ms. Smith’s beloved pet for more than 10 years. Rich contracted mange and Ms. Smith didn’t know how to help him. She called around to many private veterinarians, but with a limited income she couldn’t afford even the office visits.  After none of the home remedies she knew were working and his condition was worsening, she finally made the heartbreaking decision to surrender Rich to Charleston Animal Society (CAS) in the hopes that someone with greater financial means could help him.

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  • Blog Post

    Welcome to the New Animal Sheltering Online!

    We have the power to change our communities

    For decades, The HSUS and Animal Sheltering have worked hard to bring you the latest information, newest approaches, best practices and more from our field. With the launch of our newly improved site,, we’re thrilled to share a number of new features to help you in your quest to save lives and keep pets with their families. 

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  • Magazine Article


    Pictured with Ruby (left) and Alexis, stray cat Max was taken in by Ruby’s mother after being hit by a car. Pets for Life covered the cost of amputating his shattered leg, as well as basic veterinary care.

    A round-up of fun, inspiring news tidbits from the animal welfare world.

    Pets for Life Reaches a Milestone

    Usher and Barbara Stovall first encountered Pets for Life (PFL) a few years ago, when outreach teams began knocking on doors in their Atlanta neighborhood. The couple had adopted a puppy whose previous owner couldn’t keep her, and after chatting with staff from PFL, the Stovalls signed Peggy up for a spay surgery, vaccinations and weekly PFL training classes. Over the years, outreach team members checked in, watching “little” Peggy grow into a big girl.

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  • Sample


    Animal Sheltering magazine

    Mouthpieces is a department from Animal Sheltering magazine designed to help you communicate your messages to the public.

    Mouthpieces is a department from Animal Sheltering magazine designed to help you communicate your messages to the public.

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  • Data/Research

    Pets by the Numbers

    Ezra Millstein/The HSUS

    U.S. Pet Ownership, Community Cat and Shelter Population Estimates

    Understanding the Data

    Obtaining accurate statistical data about pets in the United States isn’t easy. Most of the information is based on estimates derived from surveys, and the various survey-takers don’t always agree. Data reflecting shelter/rescue animal populations is spotty due to a lack of reporting requirements, which leaders in animal welfare are aiming to address with the Shelter Animals Count project.

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