The ASPCA operates in various program areas, including Anti-Cruelty, Animal Health Services, Community Outreach and Government Relations.
The Anti-Cruelty Group is the branch of the ASPCA that halts and prevents animal cruelty through professional education, enforcement of New York City's anti-cruelty laws and by lobbying for stronger humane legislation nationwide. The programs under the Anti-Cruelty Group umbrella include:
Anti-Cruelty Behavior Team
The ASPCA Anti-Cruelty Group includes animal behaviorists who specialize in helping animals involved in serious crimes. The ASPCA Anti-Cruelty Behavior Team works with both the victims of animal cruelty cases and the animal perpetrators of serious attacks against people. Learn more »
Cruelty Intervention Advocacy Program
The ASPCA Cruelty Intervention Advocacy Program works in three main areas: animal hoarding, emergency veterinary care for underserved communities and resources for domestic violence survivors. Referrals are made for pet owners with mental health, financial or structural barriers that prevent them from providing necessary care to their pets. Learn more »
Field Investigations and Response
The ASPCA’s nationally respected Field Investigations and Response (FIR) Team was created to assist with the rescue of animal victims of both natural and man-made disasters. FIR is commonly called upon by state and municipal governments and other animal welfare partners to lend expertise during large-scale animal rescue operations. Learn more »
ASPCA Forensic Services
The ASPCA Animal Forensic Sciences Team works alongside our rescuers and various agencies to collect and analyze evidence that local, state and federal law enforcement may use to clinch cruelty convictions. Learn more »
The Legal Advocacy department provides expert legal assistance to better assure convictions in animal cruelty cases nationwide. The department provides “second chair” legal support through the coordination of legal and other expert services vital to the effective handling of animal cruelty prosecutions. It also conducts selective, affirmative civil litigation in cases with the potential to effect substantial change in animal protection laws nationwide.
Strategy and Campaigns
The Anti-Cruelty Strategy and Campaigns department works to help guide the diverse efforts of the other ACG departments. The department employs a holistic approach aimed at affecting systemic change in preventing cruelty to animals. The Campaigns team activates several traditional, social campaign tactics, including enhanced enforcement, legislative change, social awareness, communications and consumer behavior with a focus on farm animal welfare and puppy mills.
Animal Poison Control Center
Located at the ASPCA's Midwest Office in Urbana, IL, the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center (APCC) is the only 24-hour, 365-day facility of its kind in the United States. Staffed by 30 licensed veterinarians—15 of whom are board certified in general and/or veterinary toxicology—the APCC provides pet owners and veterinarians with live, on-call assistance related to toxic chemicals and dangerous plants, products and substances. Annually, the Center answers 200,000 calls and manages 130,000 cases. Learn more »
ASPCA Animal Hospital
The ASPCA Animal Hospital is a full-service veterinary facility providing quality medical care to animals who are victims of cruelty, shelter animals in need of advanced care, animals with post-operative complications from the Mobile Clinics, and pets in New York City, including those “at risk” for cruelty or neglect due to economic disadvantage. The ASPCA provides training externships to veterinary students and veterinary technicians and hosts the only veterinary internship program that includes rotations through shelter medicine, humane law enforcement and animal behavior. Learn more »
ASPCA in Los Angeles, CA
In 2014, the ASPCA opened our first stationary spay/neuter clinic in the City of Los Angeles. One of our goals is to reach animals most at risk of cruelty, neglect, shelter intake, and euthanasia at the source—in the heart of the city's local communities. Our newest clinic provides subsidized spay/neuter services to at-risk animals in South Los Angeles. Learn more »
Spay/Neuter Operations: Mobile and Stationary Clinics
ASPCA Spay/Neuter Clinics help end the euthanasia of adoptable dogs and cats in New York City's five boroughs by operating five state-of-the-art surgical mobile units seven days a week. Recognizing pet overpopulation often arises in neighborhoods with limited access to, and knowledge of, veterinary care, the Mobile Spay/Neuter Clinics bring these services directly to more than 120 communities. In May 2011, the ASPCA took another progressive step toward ending pet homelessness with the opening of a dedicated spay/neuter clinic in New York City for animals managed by rescuers and humane organizations.
Learn more about ASPCA Mobile Spay/Neuter Clinics »
Learn more about ASPCA Stationary Spay/Neuter Clinic »
Community Outreach focuses on providing positive outcomes for animals at risk, and includes our own shelter services in New York City. Community Outreach team members include seasoned animal welfare professionals, veterinarians, animal behaviorists, dog trainers, animal care technicians, adoption specialists and humane educators. The programs under the Community Outreach umbrella include:
ASPCA Onyx and Breezy Shefts Adoption Center
The ASPCA’s Onyx and Breezy Shefts Adoption Center places approximately 3,000 dogs, cats, puppies and kittens into loving homes each year. More than 300 cats and dogs are housed in accommodations designed for their health and well-being. The Adoption Center runs several programs to provide enhanced enrichment for the animals, including a volunteer program and obedience classes for shelter dogs and organized dog play sessions. Learn more »
The Community Initiatives team covers the United States with a cadre of skilled, experienced and dedicated professionals from a variety of animal welfare backgrounds. The team’s focus centers on the ASPCA Partnership program, and it also provides support to animal welfare organizations across the country, concentrating on shelter outreach, animal relocation, shelter development and the ASPCA Equine Fund.
Learn more about the ASPCA Partnership program »
Learn more about Animal Relocation »
Learn more about the ASPCA Equine Fund »
The ASPCA ProLearning team maintains ASPCApro.org and offers varied e-learning opportunities to animal welfare professionals on topics such as fundraising, shelter animal health, highly and life-saving shelter operations and/or adoption models. This team developed and runs the ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge.
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Learn more about the ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge »
Shelter Research and Development
The ASPCA Shelter Research and Development Department studies and identifies data patterns to provide the tools for animal shelters and their communities to save more dogs and cats. The department focuses on the measurement of programming and processes, as well as the development of new and innovative programs and processes. The Shelter Research and Development team continues to support, measure and advance two of the ASPCA’s innovative shelter programs – SAFER and Meet Your Match. As the home of the database that stores Naked Data, the department is here to assist those who want to measure their community, life-saving impact. Learn more »
The ASPCA provides animal welfare grants to organizations across the country, which helps us to respond quickly to emergencies with financial assistance where it is needed most, and to carefully match resources with needs across the country. The ASPCA is the nation’s second-largest animal welfare grant maker, providing support to U.S.-based nonprofit animal welfare organizations through cash grants, sponsorships, executive and technical assistance, and training. Grants are available for a wide range of activities that further the ASPCA’s mission. Learn more »
The ASPCA's Government Relations team works to ensure the strongest possible protections for animals through the passage of legislation and the establishment of public policies that fight animal cruelty. The group helps formulate the organization's policies and positions on animal welfare issues, and ensures that appropriate measures are adopted at the state, federal and New York City levels through drafting, testifying, direct lobbying, grassroots organizing, development of white papers and letters of support, and other legislative means. Our staff works closely with legislators at all levels of government to ensure the implementation and adequate enforcement of humane laws, and is also active in litigation where animal protection laws are under challenge. In addition, the department conducts workshops and presentations to bring important legislative issues to the public's attention.
The ASPCA's Online Advocacy program, the Advocacy Brigade, provides supporters with regular updates on the status of animal-related bills and the tools they need to have an effective voice in the lawmaking process. Learn more »