Facing COVID-19 Together with Animal Shelters
A Companion Animal Care Article from All-Creatures.org

FROM Lisa Lunghofer, Animals & Society Institute
April 2020

Animal welfare and adoption organizations are putting out desperate pleas for help in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis. The challenges are daunting... Find resources for companion animal shelters and rescue organizations.

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As you’ve probably seen, animal welfare organizations are putting out desperate pleas for help in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis. The challenges are daunting. Shelters have shut their doors to the public. Adoption events have been cancelled. The number of animals being surrendered is increasing in some locations due to people getting sick or out of misplaced fear that an animal could transmit the virus. Cleaning supplies are hard to find. Critical fundraising events have been cancelled.

While the struggle is real, there is also hope. Technology is being use in new and creative ways, including virtual meet-and-greets and paperless adoption contracts. Many animal welfare organizations are seeing an unprecedented increase in foster applications. According to a recent NY Times story, Animal Care Centers of NYC put a call out last week to fill 200 foster slots and received 2,000 applications. In the Washington, DC metro area, Lucky Dog Animal Rescue had to shut down all large adoption events, which had been their main source of adoptions for the past 10+ years. Incredibly, last Sunday they tallied 54 adoptions in a single day—a new record despite the shutdown.

There is much to be learned from these recent successes and the adaptations we have all had to make in response to COVID-19.

Maddie’s® Fund has collected emergency protocols, shelter kits, communications and marketing guides, videos, sample press releases, and more from an array of national, regional and local experts. If you work with an animal welfare organization, we urge you to check out these resources to help manage the current crisis. No doubt the coming days will present new hurdles but all of us at ASI believe we are stronger when we work together and learn from one another.

Maddie's Fund - COVID-19 and Emergency Foster Care Resources

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