Best Friends Animal Society Brings Passionate People Together to Save Pets

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Best Friends Animal Society Brings Passionate People Together to Save Pets

Hayley Matthews Hayley Matthews • 1/30/17

The Short Version: Best Friends Animal Society saves lives by finding loving homes for rescues and leading no-kill efforts around the country through life-saving programs designed to help stop the killing of animals in shelters. These programs include national initiatives focused on shutting down puppy mills, fighting breed-discriminatory legislation, and keeping community cats safe and out of shelters. In addition, animal enthusiasts can join a cause they believe in while meeting like-minded folks in a low-key atmosphere via educational and fun events and fundraisers. Taken as a whole, Best Friends fosters a welcoming space to connect with animals and humans alike.

The mission of Best Friends Animal Society is simple: to save all animals from being killed in shelters. Over 9,000 dogs and cats are killed every day in shelters across the country, and Best Friends won’t rest until that number is down to zero. To accomplish their lofty goals, this vocal no-kill advocate relies on the help of passionate animal lovers stepping up to volunteer, donate, and adopt.

Through animal adoption, not only do you get an instant best friend, you can also make yourself more attractive to a potential love interest. Who doesn’t perk up when they see a cute dog or cat in a dating profile pic? According to a PetSmart survey co-sponsored by Match, 72% of singles said a date’s reaction to their pet is important, and 35% of female respondents reported being more attracted to someone who had a pet. Additionally, 66% of those surveyed won’t even consider dating someone who doesn’t want pets, and 59% find people who adopt pets to be more attractive than those who buy them.

Photo of the Best Friends Animal Society logo

Best Friends Animal Society works to save homeless animals and place them in a forever home.

Best Friends is dedicated to eradicating animal homelessness by helping all furry friends find a good home. The Utah-based animal welfare organization works in conjunction with other animal rescue groups across the country to plan fundraising, adoption, and educational events — all of which bring together people who share a common passion.

Grab Your Dog, a Companion, and “Strut Your Mutt” for Charity

Anyone who wants to get active in the community can attend a Best Friends event. Their activist network organizes popular events throughout the year for people interested in helping animals. Strut Your Mutt is an annual dog walk held in cities across the U.S. to raise money for cats and dogs in need of permanent homes.

Going for a scenic walk can be an ideal date activity because it gives you a chance to get to know someone and strike up a conversation about childhood pets, current pets, or make-believe future pets. For pet owners of all stripes, this event provides a healthy, energetic, and charitable way to put yourself out there and meet many good-hearted animal lovers in a casual setting.

A photo of a Best Friends Strut Your Mutt ad

Strut Your Mutt events connect people and raise money for local rescue organizations and animal shelters.

Best Friends’ events are held in big cities across the country — from San Francisco to Jacksonville — and all the proceeds are given to local shelter and rescue organizations. People in all corners of the U.S. can check the Best Friends events page to see when and where the next Strut Your Mutt event is happening and easily find a place to connect with pet enthusiasts in their area.

Many Find True (Puppy) Love at Super Adoption Events

Best Friends makes finding a compatible companion simple thanks to their frequent Super Adoption events. During these weekend events, local rescue organizations and animal shelters come together to find permanent homes for as many animals as possible. While wandering around these events in search of a furry friend, you can make conversation with fellow animal lovers by trading tips with pet owners or commenting on the cuteness of a certain dog or cat.

Although Super Adoption weekends are free to the public, each participating animal rescue or shelter may charge their own adoption fees, which go toward expenses like vaccinations or pet supplies. The adoption process also varies from organization to organization. Some groups let you take your new best friend home immediately while others require a home visit to complete the adoption process.

Bustling with activity, Super Adoption weekends attract throngs of pet lovers who can’t resist a cute face.

Workshops Let You Learn With Like-Minded Animal Lovers

As much as people adore their dogs, some pet owners don’t always know the best training techniques. Instilling good behavior in a pet can take a lot of knowledge — and a lot of patience. To give dog lovers the tools they need to train their animals properly, Best Friends offers workshops to help improve your relationship with your dog.

The Dog Behavior and Handling Workshop involves three classes designed to teach dogs good behavior via positive reinforcement. Through the use of clickers, treats, toys, and praise, the course helps humans train their dogs to listen to commands.

Photo of a Best Friends training workshop

A Best Friends Animal Society training workshop can strengthen your relationship with your pet.

Those who want to turn their love of animals into a full-time career can pick up valuable tips in the society’s How to Start and Run an Animal Sanctuary workshop. Through this program, students can learn how to establish a non-profit organization, raise funds for an animal shelter, deal with feral cats, provide veterinary care in a shelter setting, and manage animal adoption events. The classes also instruct students on dealing with different types of animals, including dogs, cats, and horses.

This week-long workshop provides insightful lessons as well as the opportunity to network with attendees, course presenters, and other members of the Best Friends team.

A History of Compassion Inspires Others and Leads to “Vicktory”

Founded in 1984, The Best Friends Animal Society advocates on behalf of homeless and abused animals, offering care, instruction, and a path to adoption for dogs and cats across the U.S. Through staunch activism and community involvement, the organization hopes to put an end to euthanizing animals by pushing for rehabilitation for all dogs and cats.

Photo of a rehabilitated Vicktory dog

When Michael Vick’s dog-fighting ring was discovered, Best Friends rushed in to help the dogs.

In 2007, their commitment to the cause led the shelter to rehabilitate dogs rescued from disgraced football player Michael Vick’s Bad Newz Kennels. Because of the extent of the physical and psychological abuse inflicted by dog fights, even some animal advocates doubted the dogs could be socialized into loving pets. But Best Friends was up to the challenge. They welcomed the dogs, known as the Vicktory dogs, into their sanctuary for intensive veterinary treatment and nurturing.

Some of the Vicktory dogs did indeed find their “furever homes,” while others were trained to be service or therapy dogs. Best Friends even had a five-year reunion for the adopted Vicktory dogs and their proud owners.

From adoption events to charity walks, the Best Friends Animal Society brings animal lovers together on behalf of dogs and cats in need, and it’s a great place to find companionship — typically of the furry variety. Their events inspire volunteers across the country to get out there and make a difference. Filled with heartwarming stories and friendly faces, Best Friends offers humans and animals a fresh start.