About PAWS

PAWS is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to saving Philadelphia’s homeless and at-risk animals. PAWS is the city’s largest rescue partner and provider of low-cost, basic veterinary care for pet owners and rescue organizations that cannot otherwise access or afford it. Through its three no-kill shelters, foster care network, and special events, PAWS finds loving homes for thousands of animals each year. PAWS is working to make Philadelphia a no-kill city where every healthy and treatable pet is guaranteed a home.

There has been a dramatic reduction in Philadelphia’s homeless pet population since PAWS began: nearly 40% fewer animals will enter the city shelter in 2017 than when we started in 2006 – approximately 18,000, down from 30,000. The lifesaving rate has also steadily climbed: to an estimated 83% in 2017, up from the abysmal 11% that prompted PAWS’ founding more than a decade ago. Still, there is much work to be done to ensure survival for every savable pet in Philadelphia. 

PAWS provides comprehensive rescue and prevention efforts: pulling at-risk animals out of the city’s shelter and placing them in loving adoptive and foster homes, giving struggling pet owners the help they need to keep their pets as cherished family members rather than face abandonment, and preventing the birth of unwanted litters.

Our efforts are based out of our boutique-style Adoption Center in the Old City section of Philadelphia, our Spay/Neuter and Wellness Clinic in the Grays Ferry section, and our Northeast Adoption Center and Low-Cost Clinic.

PAWS is proud to be a founding member of the Philadelphia No-Kill Coalition, which was established in late-2017 and formally announced with Mayor Jim Kenney on Wednesday, January 10, 2018. The Coalition is a collective of animal welfare agencies working together to end the killing of savable pets in shelters. We will achieve our goal by preventing shelter surrenders and increasing rescue, adoption, and foster placements for pets with nowhere else to go.

PAWS’ efforts are 100% privately funded. The generosity of individual, corporate, media, and foundation supporters is maximized by a highly qualified staff, an enormous and active volunteer base, an engaged Board of Directors, frequent media appearances, and widespread community backing. Support for PAWS funds lifesaving initiatives which help reduce and will ultimately eliminate the unnecessary killing of Philadelphia’s healthy and treatable pets. Donations to PAWS are tax-deductible to the fullest extent allowed by law.

Learn more about PAWS’ mission and efforts: