Advocates from across California met at the State Capitol in Sacramento on Tuesday to rally for stronger animal-welfare laws at the ASPCA’s second annual Paws for Celebration event—and got to meet some very cute, adoptable pets while they were at it!
Paws for Celebration brings the great work that shelters and rescues do for their communities to the lawn of the Capitol and shows policymakers how critical sheltering services are in California. The event featured an adoption fair with cats and dogs from nearly 20 local California shelters and rescue organizations. Palomacy Dove Rescue was also on-site with rescued birds, and even a rabbit named Donkey made an appearance.
When event-goers weren’t busy cuddling adoptable pets, they got down to serious legislative business at meetings with Legislators and their staff to urge the passage of strong animal-protection legislation, including Assembly Bills 316 and 317. If passed, these two important ASPCA-sponsored bills would enhance California law enforcement’s ability to investigate animal cruelty cases and increase emergency responders’ capacity to care for animals during natural disasters.
Attendees were even treated to a visit by ASPCA Celebrity Ambassador Katherine Schwarzenegger to show her support for the work local shelters do and to advocate for the passage of A.B. 316 and A.B. 317.
“As a lifelong Californian and parent to my own rescue dog, I am so grateful to the shelters and rescues that care for thousands of homeless animals across our state every day,” Schwarzenegger said. “We owe it to these organizations to ensure they have all the resources they need to continue providing these much-needed services.”
With nearly 100 attendees, Paws for Celebration quadrupled in size since last year’s event, sending a strong message to legislators that animal welfare is becoming increasingly important to Californians—and lawmakers agreed that stronger legislation is necessary.
“The ASPCA provides critical services to these animals in California and across the nation,” said Assembly Member Brian Maienschein of Poway, who was present at the event. “I am proud to be the sponsor of two bills this session which will ensure that the ASPCA and other organizations can aid California’s pets in the event of a large-scale cruelty case or disaster situation.”
Also in attendance were Assembly Members Matt Dababneh, Marc Steinorth, William Brough, David Hadley, Patrick O'Donnell and Matthew Harper, all of whom are working on important animal welfare legislation this session that ranges from helping dogs and cats used in tax-payer funded research to strengthening penalties for acts of cruelty towards animals in sanctuaries and shelters to providing tax incentives for animal adoptions.
We want to thank the advocates who were able to join us for this exciting event and all of our supporters in California and across the nation for continuing to stand by our side as we fight to protect animals.
Don’t miss your state’s next lobby day or adoption event! Sign up to receive ASPCA Advocacy Alerts to stay up-to-date on fun and informative events near you.
During the first week of May each year, we celebrate Be Kind to Animals Week. This year marks the 100th Anniversary of this very special occasion, and we’re excited to spend this week going the extra mile for animals in need. While we know our supporters are “kind” to animals year-round, we wanted to share a few ways to get involved now:
Join Team ASPCA to Help Animals in Need: "Create a personal ASPCA fundraising page for an important event in your life and share it with your friends and family. Whether you donate your birthday, honor the memory of a beloved pet or decide to run a 5K with Team ASPCA, the money you raise can make a big difference for animals in need nationwide.
Volunteer at Your Local Shelter: From walking dogs to fundraising, there are tons of ways you can get involved with your local animal shelter. Use our shelter finder to find a shelter or rescue group near you.
Adopt a Pet: There are countless dogs and cats across the country who are waiting to find loving homes. If you’ve considered adding a furry friend to your family, now may be the perfect time to visit your local shelter! Visit our Adopt section to find available dogs and cats in your area.
Sign Up for the ASPCA Advocacy Brigade: When you join the Advocacy Brigade, you’ll receive important alerts from the ASPCA. We’ll contact you when we need your help fighting for laws against animal cruelty.
Thanks for helping animals in need this week, and every week.
Attention, horse lovers: ASPCA Help a Horse Day is coming up, and there are many ways you can make a difference for equines this weekend. While Help a Horse Day is Sunday, April 26, the ASPCA and equine rescues, sanctuaries and animal shelters across the nation will be celebrating April 24-26.
Here are three ways you can participate:
Attend a Help a Horse Day celebration in your area. Help a Horse Day is the perfect time to support your local equine rescues, which work hard to save animals who have been starved, abused or abandoned. These groups will host open houses, education programs, spring festivals, hoedowns, barn raisings, 5K walks and other fun-filled events throughout the weekend. Visit our directory to find an event near you.
Enter our Help a Horse Day Photo Contest. Share a photo of your favorite equine on your social media networks using the hashtag #HelpAHorseContest—tell us what you love most about him or her for the chance to win a special ASPCA horse lover’s prize pack!
Thanks for helping us protect horses on this special day and all year long.
The ASPCA was excited to honor award-winning actresses Hilary Swank and Edie Falco at our 18th annual ASPCA Bergh Ball on Thursday, April 9. Emceed by actress Lake Bell and designer Isaac Mizrahi, the “pup art” -themed event was held at New York City’s Plaza Hotel and helped raise funds for the ASPCA’s lifesaving work on behalf of homeless, abused and neglected animals.
Swank received the ASPCA Compassion Award, which recognizes individuals in entertainment and the arts who have made outstanding contributions to animal welfare by utilizing their creative talents and prominence to bring attention and action to the plight of vulnerable and homeless dogs and cats.
Falco received the ASPCA Voice for Animals Award, which recognizes influencers who use traditional and modern media to increase awareness and inspire action on behalf of animal in crisis in the United States.
“Hilary Swank and Edie Falco have as much compassion as they have talent, and we’re thankful they’ve chosen to dedicate considerable time and energy to help animals in crisis,” said ASPCA President & CEO Matt Bershadker. “The work they’ve done has helped save and protect countless lives, and the ASPCA is proud to recognize their commitment with these awards.”
The event also featured playing cards that showcased photos of dogs at cats at the ASPCA Adoption Center in New York City, as well as dog and cat prints by Andy Warhol, licensed by the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts. Posing as jokers in the deck are Bravo’s Andy Cohen, with his dog Wacha, and actor Nathan Lane, with his dog Mabel.
Thanks to everyone who attended, and congratulations to our 2015 award recipients!
Grab your party hats! Friday, April 10, marks the ASPCA’s birthday and we’re thrilled to be celebrating 149 years of lifesaving work for animals across the country.
When ASPCA founder Henry Bergh first spoke up for animals, America was not a very animal-friendly place. But Bergh, a gifted orator with influential friends, rallied people to the cause and succeeded in getting the New York State Legislature to pass a charter officially incorporating the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) on April 10, 1866. Just nine days later, the first effective anti-cruelty law was passed and, with a team of three, the ASPCA went to work to enforce it. By the time Bergh died in 1888, 37 of the 38 states in the Union had passed anti-cruelty laws.
We’ve accomplished a great deal since then. From operating New York City’s first equine ambulance (two years before the City’s first ambulance for people) to our veterinary advancements during the 1920s to our recent accomplishments in Los Angeles, we have a proud history that continues today.
We’re honored to work every day to assist animals nationwide and we are proud of you, our supporters, for trusting and enabling us to do this important job. Thank you for fighting alongside us these 149 years!