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Animal Rescue

The Humane Society of the United States has been involved with animal rescue from its earliest days. Our core mission is to prevent cruelty to animals by striving for a more humane world for both people and animals. Our hands-on care and services brings comfort and relief to more than 100,000 animals each year. We combat animal cruelty on a global scale to end practices such as puppy mills, animal fighting, factory farming, seal slaughter, horse cruelty, and the wildlife trade.

Animal Rescue Team

A key piece of our animal rescue efforts is our Animal Rescue Team.

Our highly-trained Animal Rescue Team consists of first responders who jump into action to rescue animals in peril wherever and whatever the disaster. Our team has been on the ground during hurricanes as well during raids on puppy mills and animal hoarding situations.

The HSUS's Animal Rescue Team works in close cooperation with law enforcement to investigate the worst cases of animal cruelty on a nationwide basis. Our staff, through their work, is dedicated to the safety and protection of animals and the communities that love and value them.

Animal Rescue Begins with Prevention

The HSUS complements the work of local groups and animal rescue leagues by focusing on national-level issues like ending the puppy mill industry, strengthening cruelty laws and eliminating large-scale animal abuses. We also run programs and spearhead campaigns designed to ease the burden on local sheltering groups.

There are millions of people living in underserved communities with their pets in the United States. Many are forced to surrender their beloved companions to animal shelters because they are unable to afford proper care for them. Our Pets for Life program is addressing this dire situation by reaching out to people who have the least access to animal wellness information and services. By closing the service gap that exists for these owners and their pets we can ensure that they remain together in loving homes.

Animal Shelters and Sanctuaries

While The HSUS does not run or oversee local animal shelters or rescues, we do operate rescue teams, community-based programs and five wildlife sanctuaries and care centers that directly assist tens of thousands of animals each year. The animals we rescue are either transferred to local rescue groups or transported to emergency shelters for thorough examination by veterinarians in order to receive any necessary medical treatment they may require.

Rescue and Adoption go Hand-in-Hand

Heroic animal rescue operations aren't where the story ends. The next step depends on people like you who are looking to add a pet to your life, so why not consider adopting one of these rescued animals or other homeless animals from your local shelter or rescue group?

Animal shelters and rescue groups have the best selection of animals anywhere. Whether you want a puppy or a more mature dog, a purebred or a one-of-a-kind mixed breed, even a rabbit or hamster, you can find a great companion animal at these facilities all screened for good health and behavior. Most will even help you with spaying and neutering!


Partner with Us

Our Emergency Placement Partners help find homes for many animals rescued from cruelty, abuse and neglect. If you run a rescue group or shelter, see how you can get involved, for the good of animals near and far—and for your group as well.

Here's how

News & Events

  • October 13, 2016

    The HSUS announces honorees for To The Rescue! New York: Saving Animal Lives gala

    The Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) today announced that fashion industry leader HUGO BOSS and acclaimed philanthropist Georgina Bloomberg will be honored at the 2016 To the Rescue! New York gala to benefit and celebrate the organization’s animal rescue efforts. Responsible for saving and rehabilitating thousands of animals each year, The HSUS and its global arm Humane Society International travel across the country and the globe to help animals in need from puppy mills, dogfighting, neglect and natural disasters. The annual gala takes place on Friday, Nov. 18, 2016 at Cipriani 42nd Street.

  • October 12, 2016

    Rescuing animals impacted by Hurricane Matthew

    The Humane Society of the United States’ Animal Rescue Team is on the ground providing disaster relief efforts for Horry County, South Carolina, pets and residents in the wake of severe flooding following Hurricane Matthew.

  • October 6, 2016

    The Humane Society of the United States deploys Animal Rescue Team to South Carolina

    The Humane Society of the United States and Greenville County Animal Care are relocating South Carolina shelter animals before Hurricane Matthew strikes the Southeastern coast.

  • August 24, 2016

    Rescued animals take next steps and will be available for adoption in Maine, Ohio and West Virginia

    Following the rescue of 69 animals from unsafe and unsanitary conditions in Gallia County, Ohio, the puppies and dogs are recovering and preparing for placement into new, loving homes.

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