Animal welfare is a major issue for many people around the globe. Both domestic and wild animals rely on humans for protection, care, and basic rights. Many animal welfare organizations offer a myriad of resources for helping animals in need. The following are four of the most well-respected.
Humane Society of the United States
The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) offers considerable resources on animal welfare. They are responsible for supporting adoption programs that have resulted in millions of companion animals living good lives in forever homes. Causes they work for include the end of the testing of cosmetics on animals, the end of trophy hunting, putting a stop to puppy mills, increasing the quality of life for farm animals, and fighting animal cruelty and neglect. They have an animal rescue team that works on the ground to remove animals from bad situations.
The American Veterinary Medical Association
The American Veterinary Medical Association, or AVMA, is the premier organization in the United States overseeing the medical care of animals. They offer numerous resources on animal welfare as well as work to carefully analyze the science and take positions on some of the most challenging issues facing animals today. They serve as a professional organization for veterinarians to provide continuing education and other professional resources to the people across the country who see to the medical care of animals.
American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals
The ASPCA works to prevent animal cruelty and exploitation in all its forms. They provide resources for rehoming animals, legal challenges for better animal protection laws, information on pet care, and more. They seek to address preventable issues that see animals surrendered to shelters and get animals adopted in order to alleviate shelters of high intake rates. Issues they work to address include breed-specific legislation that prevents owners from keeping certain breeds in housing units, economic issues that make pet veterinary care cost-prohibitive, and behavioral issues that many owners do not have the knowledge or resources to handle.
Local organizations have the most direct impact on animal welfare in a community. They offer resources such as adoption aid, low-cost spay/neuter programs, humane animal control services, and more. They can be private organizations or ones provided by the county or city. National and international organizations tackle the big fights, but those big fights cannot be won without victories in small battles everywhere.