Best Friends Animal Society in Los Angelesis a community outreach and advocacy program. Silva and Francis Battista, two of the original founders of the Best Friends Animal Sanctuary in Kanab, Utah launched L.A. Programs in 1991. From those first grassroots steps, which included assistance to animal victims of fires, riots and the Northridge earthquake, Best Friends - L.A. Programs has grown to become one of the most influential and effective animal welfare organizations in the L.A. area.
Best Friend’s Los Angeles’ "Pup My Ride" program transports at-risk, small breed dogs from L.A. area shelters to communities where the demand is high but the supply is low. The program was developed to offer communities a ‘rescue alternative’ to pet stores and irresponsible breeders, therefore decreasing shelter euthanasia, increasing adoption and saving lives. The program receives support from the Heigl Foundation and has many celebrity volunteers, including Denise Richards, Joanna Krupa and Amy Smart.
Best Friend L.A.’s ‘Puppy Mill Initiative’, a volunteer-driven campaign, educates and advocates for better legislation to combat puppy mills and holds peaceful demonstrations at pet stores that sell puppies from mills. The goal is to build awareness about the pet store - puppy mill connection by engaging the community to encourage people to adopt from local shelters and rescues rather than buying them at a pet store.
Catnippersis an all-volunteer run, high volume spay/neuter clinic offering free services to community cats in Los Angeles. This bi-monthly service is conducted at Fix Nation, which was founded by Mark Dodge and Karn Myers as the first clinic of its kind in LA. Each Canippers spays/neuters up to 140 cats in one day! FixNation operates daily and averages 90 feral cats/day that go back in to the their community spayed/neutered, reducing the number of cats/kittens that are needlessly euthanized in our shelters.
Independent Rescue Adoptionsare held every weekend at local parks, humane pet stores and businesses throughout L.A. County. These adoptions were designed to provideindividuals in the Greater-L.A. community (non-501c3’s) a venue to showcase rescued cats, dogs and bunnies for adoption, with the leadership and support of Best Friend’s staff and volunteers.
In March 2011 BF LA will unveil the brand new Tails on Tour Mobile Adoption Unit, which will operate 4 days/week adopting out LA shelter animals.
In partnership with LA Animal Services, BF LA conducts public adoption events at the unopened Northeast Valley shelter in Mission Hills. While the shelter staff provide the basic care to the animals, BF volunteers and staff provide daily exercise, enrichment, training and grooming to increase adoptability at each adoption.
Best Friend Los Angeles’ Super Adoption Festivals are the largest pet adoption events in the country. Starting in 2011, this 2-day adoption event will be produced once a year by L.A. Programs staff and volunteers. The event serves the shelter and rescue community, by finding homes for hundreds of dogs, cats, and bunnies, including many who would otherwise be euthanized within the overwhelmed Los Angeles animal shelter system.
The Brigade are Best Friends L.A. volunteers who devote time each month to working on projects that directly help local rescue organizations or animal shelters. Some of the projects include grooming dogs before adoption events, assisting in transport of animals to no-kill shelters/rescues and painting, updating and improving local shelter facilities.
New to Best Friends L.A in 2010 Strut Your Mutt has been a long-standing tradition in its home state of Salt Lake City, Utah. This walk and festival is unique in that the proceeds go directly to the rescue organizations that are participating. Using a pledge system, these network charities make teams of participants and raise funds for their organization with the help of Best Friends to promote, market and coordinate the event.
New to Best Friends L.A in 2011 the aCATemy awards is a swank yet silly cat only adoption event, featuring over 200 LA shelter cats. Even though there is a high end feel to the event atmosphere, with red carpets and golden trophies, the focus is getting shelter cats adopted into loving homes. Adoption fees are discounted and adopters get all sorts of gifts and goodies with their new friend.
In partnership with Downtown Dog Rescue, BF LA’s Pit Bull Event will also be taking place in NYC. The purpose of this event is to serve members of the lower income communities who already own pit bull type dogs and provide them with free vaccines, spay/neuter, leashes and collars, training opportunities, and resources to help them meet the needs of their dog and to be a responsible dog owner. This event will also host a number of rescue organizations devoted to rescuing pit bull type dogs.
East Valley Cat Project
In our attempt to decrease cats coming in to
the Greater LA shelter system and subsequently being euthanized, BF LA is undertaking a
targeted spay/neuter and educational campaign in the cities of Pocoima and Sylmar. These 2 cities have shown to be responsible for the highest rate of intake of cats across all of the 6 LA city shelters. This project will be a collaboration between Best Friends and FixNation to alter 2,000 stray, owned and community cats from these areas. The goal is to also build a youth educational program within these communities to sustain these life saving efforts long-term and build awareness among residents.
L.A. is proud to be the first city to have our own local Best Friends Emergency Response team. There are hundreds of Best Friends emergency response volunteers around the country who respond immediately in a coordinated effort to help with not only natural disasters, but also man-made ones. The LA Programs emergency response team will be lifesavers for animals in the case of earthquakes, floods, fires, puppy mill busts, and hoarding situations.
HOW YOU CAN HELP…
Best Friends L.A. is continuing to expand programs in the L.A area and we are always looking for new opportunities, new volunteers and new ways to get out our message of No More Homeless Pets.
No More Homeless Pets is a nationwide movement to bring about a time when homeless, unwanted animals are no longer being destroyed in shelters, and when every healthy dog or cat can be guaranteed a good life in a caring home.
Best Friends provides information, assistance, and training to people and grassroots groups who are looking to create no-kill communities.
To find out more about Best Friends Animal Society, visit: