Best Friends Animal Society Launches First-of-its-Kind Data Dashboard to Mobilize Communities Around 2025 Lifesaving Goal
Kanab, UT - For the first time in the history of the century-old animal welfare movement, communities and local advocates will now have a detailed community-by-community snapshot of animal shelters across the U.S., through a new innovative data platform launched by Best Friends Animal Society.
The new community lifesaving dashboard is a groundbreaking tool that provides local communities, individuals and policy makers with critical data so that they can take collective responsibility for what happens to pets in their community, better support their local shelters, and help save more lives.
Until this point, animal welfare advocates and supporters working to save as many pets in shelters as possible have struggled with limited data about the state of shelters in the U.S. Over the past two years, Best Friends spearheaded an extensive data collection process that involved coordinated outreach to every shelter in America followed by additional research, data analysis, and technology development. To create the most comprehensive data set on animal welfare ever published, Best Friends collected data directly from shelters, state and local coalitions, government websites, and even FOIA requests.
"When we started out on this project, animal welfare sector didn't even know the number of shelters in the country, which jurisdictions they served, or the full scope of where and how many dogs and cats were being killed just because of space issues," noted Julie Castle, CEO, Best Friends Animal Society.
By providing the most detailed picture to date of the current lifesaving status for shelters across the country, the dashboard unlocks new opportunities for local communities, individuals and families to take an active role in saving more pets and animals. Supporters who use the dashboard will have easy-to-access information about how many dogs and cats are entering shelters and how many are leaving alive. It will also help give the public a better understanding of shelters and types of pets most in need of help and connect them to those shelters.
"Individual community members have the strongest and best voice when it comes to mobilizing others to support their local shelters," Castle continued. "We designed this new tool in a way that any individual with a smartphone or computer can easily access the information he or she needs to make a difference."
The dashboard builds on more than three decades of lifesaving efforts from Best Friends and its network of more than 2,700 local partners. Through Best Friends' support and coordination with local shelters in communities across the country, the number of animals killed has dropped from 17 million in 1984 to less than 733,000 dogs and cats in 2018. While Best Friends' CEO Julie Castle recognizes the progress that has been made, closing the remaining gap in animal deaths requires a clear understanding of what shelters need help and how best to support their operations.
The dashboard is designed to mobilize the community directly in support of local shelters. "We know animal lovers want to support their local shelters and to save their pets. By using national animal shelter data, we hope to inspire community action that will truly have an impact and help us achieve our goal of no-kill by 2025," said Castle.
With the help of the community lifesaving dashboard, Best Friends aims to continue the movement's forward progress, empower animal lovers and help communities throughout the country save more pets. To visit the new lifesaving dashboard, click here.
About Best Friends Animal Society
Best Friends Animal Society is a leading national animal welfare organization dedicated to ending the killing of dogs and cats in America's shelters. In addition to running lifesaving programs in partnership with more than 2,700 animal welfare groups across the country, Best Friends has regional centers in New York City, Los Angeles, Atlanta and Salt Lake City, and operates the nation's largest no-kill sanctuary for companion animals. Founded in 1984, Best Friends has helped reduce the number of animals killed in shelters nationwide from an estimated 17 million per year to around 733,000. Determined to bring the country to no-kill by the year 2025, Best Friends and its nationwide network of members and partners are working to Save Them All®. To check out the community lifesaving dashboard and for more information, visit bestfriends.org.