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Animal Shelters & Rescue Groups


Dare to Care, Saving Shelter Animals by Rose De Dan
Every caring heart makes a difference to a shelter animal in need of a loving home.


Animal Rescue Directory: A State by State listing of Animal Rescue Groups and Shelters.

Cat in a Tree Rescue Directory may list someone located nearby that can help you get the adventurous feline down safely.

Dog Rescue: Dogs in Danger of Euthanasia’s website lists dogs in area shelters that are slated for euthanasia. You can do a zip code search if you are looking for a dog.

Mission Reunite seeks to reunite lost pets with their owners/guardians. Their site contains some excellent tips for increasing the chances of finding your lost cat or dog quickly. They also train and certify pet detectives and K9 search dogs to locate lost pets.

Pet Finder USA operates a database where you can search for adoptable pets; locate shelters and rescue groups; learn more about how to care for your pet; post classified ads for lost or found pets, pets wanted, and pets needing homes; sign up to be a volunteer to help your local shelter or rescue group.

Rehoming your pet should be easy and stress free both for you and your pet. Our experts at, the largest non-profit pet adoption website, with support from The Petco Foundation, have created a simple, reliable, free program to help you place your pet from your loving home directly to another.

Washington State Resources


Emerald City Pet Rescue/Kitty Harbor Adoption Center is a non-profit rescue, rehabilitation and adoption facility for homeless and abandoned cats and kittens. They have a boutique for purchase of select pet products, and need volunteers experienced with the care of cats. They welcome donations, see their website for their wish list.


New Moon Farm Goat Rescue and Sanctuary is dedicated to the rescue, rehabilitation and adoption of animals in need, which includes goats, horses, donkeys, sheep, cats and dogs. Whether victims of financial difficulties, neglect or abuse, they are committed to taking in unwanted animals brought to us via owner surrender, as well as by animal control. In addition to caring for these animals, New Moon Farm strives to promote compassion and respect for all living creatures through a presence in the community and by offering educational opportunities.

OldDog Haven is a very small group of people with a network of foster homes and supporters. Their goal is to provide a loving, safe home for senior dogs abandoned at this stage of their lives. When they have room, and the means, they take these dogs into our homes; if possible they adopt out those with a reasonable life-expectancy. They care for the rest as long as they have good quality of life. In addition, we try to assist owners in finding new homes for their senior dogs through our website and referrals. These volunteers do much needed and very difficult work. Donations and volunteers are much appreciated.

Sarvey Wildlife Center provides food, shelter, and rehabilitation to orphaned and injured wildlife. Their site has some great success stories with beautiful photos as well as valuable information on what to do if you find an orphaned or injured animal or bird.


Greyhound Pets, Inc. is a non-profit organization dedicated to the welfare of greyhounds and greyhound mixes, serving the Pacific Northwest and Southwestern Canada.


Macaw Rescue and Sanctuary provides shelter for over 800 birds. Birds come to them from bird owners who, in many different ways, find themselves in a position where they can no longer care for them. While Macaw Rescue and Sanctuary is not open to the public, they do allow individuals who have certain skills to provide services on an “as-needed” basis. As a non-profit organization donations are always welcome, and they also have a wish list of needs. Evening Magazine did a lovely piece on them.


Puget Sound WildCare is a non-profit that takes in and rehabilitates 2,800 animals a year to release them back to their habitats or to adoptive families when appropriate. With their roots in wildlife rehabilitation, they also focus on promoting Environmental Education and Wildlife Conservation.


Rescue Every Dog (and Cat) is committed to saving the lives of exceptional dogs and other companion animals. We seek to save animals that have been referred to us due to their exceptional personalities and temperaments by shelter workers, animal control officers or vet staff who have seen these special animals potential. We seek to save exceptional animals in good health or in need of correctable medical assistance or treatment. Their website has great stories, opportunities for volunteering/donating, and resources.


MEOW Cat Rescue places approximately 1500 animals into permanent homes every year. They offer foster care and volunteer opportunities.

Washington Ferret Rescue and Shelter is no-kill, caring for ferrets in the Puget Sound area. They have good information about adoption and care of ferrets, a bi-monthly newsletter, and photos on their website, and need volunteers and donations.


Feral Cat Spay/Neuter Project offers free spay/neuter services for free-roaming cats and low cost spay/neuter services for tame cats. They guide you through every step to use their clinic, beginning with why and how to help the cats and ending with their return home after safe and humane spay/neuter.


Rescued Paws is a humane, no-kill organization established by a small group of dedicated animal lovers. Rescued Paws (RPAWS) does not have a physical location, but consists of a network of foster homes. They are staffed entirely by volunteers. This keeps the operating expenses down; all donations are used for the care and treatment of the animals. Medical issues are addressed and spay/neuter surgeries arranged with local Veterinarians, prior to adoption. They are a 501(c)3 non-profit organization.,and donations to their rescue are tax deductible.

Mason County

Kitten Rescue of Mason County is dedicated to placing abandoned and unwanted kittens with safe, loving homes. Kitten Rescue is a philosophy. It is a belief that cats are granted life from a source above human beings. We coordinate with foster homes across the county to test, innoculate, alter, and save feline lives.We have a small cottage, with living room, kitchen and three bedrooms. They also have a travel trailer with a fenced yard for our longer term kitties, since they are a no kill shelter. Only a fraction of their kittens for adoption are at the facility, they rest are raised and loved in foster homes.

North Cascades

Pasado’s Safe Haven is one of the premiere animal rescue organizations in the United States dedicated to 24-hour rescue and rehabilitation of dogs, cats, and farm animals. Pasado’s Safe Haven has waged numerous prosecutions against animal abusers, winning major convictions.

Pasado’s sponsors The Spay Station, the first mobile spay/neuter clinic in Washington State offering free spay/neuter services to the pets of the low-income, to whom most unwanted litters of dogs and cats are born. Take a tour of Pasado’s Safe Haven, where animals who have been rescued from severe neglect and abuse live out their lives in peace. Volunteer, or make a donation to sponsor rescued animals by “adopting” them. It’s a great way to help provide food and veterinary care for an animal who once had no hope.


Wild Felid Advocacy Center offers a variety of services and programs to better the lives of felines in the wild and captivity. They offer wild feline placement, captive feline assistance, tours by appointment, educational presentations, and an online newsletter. They have openings for volunteers, accept donations, memberships, or gifts for the cats (see their website), or you can sponsor a feline for 6 months to a year.


Sara’s Sanctuary is unique from any other sanctuary in our state, as preference isn’t given to any one specific species of animal. Animals have literally come from all over the US, with the majority coming from the Puget Sound region, their focus is on injured, abused and disabled, with a promise for care for life.

Seattle Purebred Dog Rescue is a non-profit referral organization dedicated to placing unwanted purebred dogs into suitable homes, and preventing unwanted purebreds from overloading the shelter system. Towards attaining those goals, we promote responsible dog ownership by educating the public in the selection, care and training of dogs. Founded as a non-political organization in 1987, SPDR works cooperatively with breeders, animal shelters, breed clubs, and individuals to accomplish SPDR’s purpose.

Seattle Area

Ginger’s Pet Rescue specializes in rescuing Death Row dogs. Owner of the Rickshaw Restaurant in North Seattle, Ginger Luke became involved in canine rescue quite by accident in 2006. And two years later, Ginger’s Pet Rescue has found homes for more than 10,000 dogs, many of which have come off Death Row in shelters ranging from Washington state to Northern California.

The Itty Bitty Kitty Committee fosters kittens that come from the Tacoma/Pierce County Humane Society. The kittens are placed into foster homes, where they are cared for until they are old enough to be adopted into a loving home. The IBKC blog follows the daily lives of the foster kittens and Charlene Butterbean, their resident cat. Occasionally they feature other kittens being fostered by friends.

Progressive Animal Welfare Society (PAWS) advocates for animals through education, legislation and direct care. Located in Washington state, animals can be found at the PAWS shelter in Lynnwood and Cat City in Seattle. They also have a PAWS Wildlife Center for dealing with injured or orphaned wildlife.

Seattle Humane has a state-of-the-art animal shelter and veterinary medicine facility that serves thousands of adoptable and community pets annually. Strong focus on support for low-income families struggling to keep their animal family with them. Services include adoption, pet re-homing, temporary fostering, veterinary, spay/neuter, pet deposit support, pet food bank assistance, and much more.


Seattle Area Feline Rescue (formerly Animal Talk) is a non-profit, no-kill rescue. SAFe Rescue takes in homeless cats and kittens (including seniors and special needs cats), gives them the care they need to recover, and finds them loving homes.

Whisker City is a private, no-kill animal shelter in Seattle, WA area (Shoreline), that is dedicated to the rescue and rehabilitation of abandoned, abused and neglected cats. They need monetary donations and volunteers.


Northwest Organization for Animal Help (NOAH) staff, volunteers, and Board of Directors work towards stopping the euthanasia of healthy adoptable dogs and cats in Northwest Washington with a strong low-income spay/neuter program and by partnering with overcrowded local animal shelters where they take animals in and care for them in bar-less dog suites and cat colonies. They accept donations and volunteers.


Kindred Souls Foundation provides sanctuary to abandoned, abused, and neglected cats and dogs of all ages, a holistic approach to their care, and education on the rewards and responsibilities of animal companionship.


Humane Society Tacoma & Pierce County’s mission is to protect and promote the well-being of animals and to foster positive relationships between animals and people. Behind that statement is a vision of a community where animals are treated with respect, every pet has a permanent and loving home, and companion animals are spayed or neutered. They offer education, spay/neuter assistance, and many other resources. They need donations, volunteers, and of course, adopters!


Vashon Island Pet Protectors was established in 1984, and is a no-kill and non-profit 501c3 animal rescue organization run by compassionate and dedicated volunteers.

WolfTown “Rescuing wolves, wildlife, and ourselves” and “Finding the balance of Animals and Wilderness” are two of their themes. In addition to wolf rescue they also do wildlife rehabilitation, rescuing injured and orphaned wildlife and returning them to the wild when they are able to fend for themselves. They are open for visits by appt., need volunteers, members and donations.

West Seattle

Emerald City Pet Rescue/Kitty Harbor Adoption Center is a non-profit rescue, rehabilitation and adoption facility for homeless and abandoned cats and kittens. They have a boutique for purchase of select pet products, and need volunteers experienced with the care of cats. They welcome donations, see their website for their wish list.

Friends of the Animals Foundation is an all-volunteer organization based in West Seattle and devoted to cat rescue and foster care. A small organization with a big heart they have taken on some large projects such as the rescue of cats abandoned after the closing down of the Highline Housing Project (you have no idea how many cats that is, and all trapped behind chain link fencing with no access to food or water) and the 15 outdoor cats left with no one to care for their needs when the kind person who had been feeding them was permanently hospitalized. Rescue then also entailed medical care for the cats that survived the attack of a neighbor’s dog. A high level of care such as this is not inexpensive, so please support this very fine local rescue organization, your financial contribution is important to the care of these cats.


Homeward Pet Adoption Center is a no-kill, non-profit animal shelter serving the Seattle area. Their mission is to give homeless animals a second chance through our rescue, shelter, and adoption programs. With as many as 50 dogs and cats available at any given time and over 1,000 animals adopted out annually, the Center is the largest no-kill companion animal adoption center in the state. Donations welcome, and volunteer and foster opportunities available.

Other Resources

Dogwise contains a selection of books related to dogs adopted from shelters, how to rescue dogs in any emergency situation, behavioral remedies for the adopted dog, etc.

Ark R.A.I.N. Wildlife Sanctuary is a “safe haven” which takes in exotic animals that are in need of special care and a loving place to reside the rest of their lives. For some animals they are the last resort before euthanasia. In addition they help save rare, threatened and endangered species and the environment by increasing public awareness with outreach programs presented by The Mobile Ark, the education department of Ark R.A.I.N. Sanctuary. They accept donations and have a wish list.

Best Friends Animal Society is the nation’s largest sanctuary for abused and abandoned animals. There are about 1500 dogs, cats, and other companion animals receiving special care at this 3000 acre sanctuary. Many of the animals will go on to new and loving homes, but for those that are not eligible due to abuse, handicap, age, illness, etc. Best Friends is their haven for life. Volunteer with them — share some of your vacation time with the animals at Best Friends.

Big Dogs – Huge Paws is a 501c3, non-profit organization comprised of volunteers dedicated to rescuing, rehoming, and rehabilitating unwanted giant breed dogs that have been mistreated, neglected, abused and/or abandoned.

China Bear Rescue is Animals Asia, a nonprofit in Asia dedicated to eliminating ‘bear farming.’ and rescuing the bears, has asked for help from the shamanic community. The founder, staff, veterinarians, and workers are eager to have shamanic work done for the bears at the bear refugee center. Bear farming is the horrific practice of caging moon bears (a beautiful species of bear) in coffin-sized cages where they cannot move and permanently installing catheters to remove the constant flow of bear bile. Bear bile has been used in Chinese medicine for centuries and is also coveted on the black market (Animals Asia is working to get this horrible practice declared illegal).

Earthfire Institute Wildlife Sanctuary was founded in 2000 to develop a new model of relating to nature through the voices of the rescued wildlife under its care. A 40-acre wildlife sanctuary and retreat center, it is located on the western slope of Grand Teton National Park, near Driggs, Idaho. They have an amazing website with beautiful stories—I highly recommend signing up for their newsletter. A non-profit, you can support the beautiful work that Earthfire does through donations and their wish list.

Gentle Giants Rescue and Adoptions is the largest giant breed dog rescue in the United States, with multiple facilities and many foster homes. Located on a sprawling estate just one hour east of Los Angeles in Riverside County, California, Gentle Giants Rescue and Adoptions, Inc. is a California non-profit 501(c)(3) public benefit corporation, and is the charity of Burt and Tracy Ward.

Guide to Cruelty-Free Beauty Shopping plus information on compassion for animals and animal welfare. [thanks to Megan and Mrs. Stagle, Hampton Library]

Northwest Animal Rights Network (NARN) was founded in 1986, and is the largest grassroots animal activist group in the Pacific Northwest. They publish the Puget Sound Area Animal Services Guide, an invaluable resource for shelters, rescue groups, low cost spay and neuter clinics, and all others things animal.

Stray Rescue of St. Louis helps save abandoned pets from disease, neglect, and death on the streets. Its founder, Randy Grim, is the focus of the informative and hard-hitting book “The Man Who Talks To Dogs,” recommended reading for anyone wanting to learn about the lives of dogs who are victims of urban decay.

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