Local Rescue Groups and Shelters Form Coalition with Best Friends Animal Society to Create Northwest Arkansas Partnership for Animal Welfare

Best Friends PR Team prteam@bestfriends.org

Coalition Aims to End the Killing of Healthy and Treatable Cats and Dogs in Area Shelters

$45,000 in Grants Awarded and "Save Them All Sunday" Pet Adoptions Announced 

Bentonville, AR - Northwest Arkansas shelter pets and those that love them have a reason to celebrate with the recent formation of the Northwest Arkansas Partnership for Animal Welfare (NWA PAW), a group on a mission to use collaborative public and private partnerships to build and sustain a no-kill* community where 90 percent or more of the dogs and cats in the Northwest Arkansas area are saved.

NWA PAW is made up of 25 partner organizations that bring together animal experts who can lead in local lifesaving work, including programs for spay/neuter, community cats, adoptions and transfers, among other things. The group believes that collaboration is key, and goals cannot be accomplished unless the rescue and shelter community, along with civic representatives and the public, work together to share responsibility, information, resources and tactics to save all healthy and treatable pets in Northwest Arkansas area shelters.    

Best Friends Animal Society, a national animal welfare organization focused on ending the killing of pets in America's shelters by 2025, was asked to guide the coalition formation one year ago due to its intensive efforts and hands on experience implementing no-kill initiatives in shelters and communities across the country. The organization's efforts in the area will be known as Best Friends in Northwest Arkansas.

"There are just over 4,300 communities across the country-including nine in Arkansas-saving all healthy and treatable cats and dogs and we look forward to adding all of Northwest Arkansas to the list soon," said Jackie Roach, Senior Manager, Best Friends in Northwest Arkansas. "Best Friends' believes that by working together, we can save them all. The NWA PAW is a great example of that." 

NWA PAW is comprised of Animal League of Washington County, Arkansas Weimaraner Rescue, Bella Vista Animal Shelter, Best Friends Animal Society, Big Paws of the Ozarks, Blue Moon Cat Sanctuary, Fabulous Felines of NWA, Fayetteville Animal Services, Fighting for Fido, For Pets Sake, Friends of Prairie Grove Pound, House of Little Dogs, Humane Society of the Ozarks, MAK German Shorthaired Pointer Rescue, Mew Cat Rescue, Northwest Arkansas Community Cat Project, Nurture Northwest Arkansas, NWA Bully Haven Rescue, Paws & Claws Pet Shelter, Purr Café, Spay Arkansas, Springdale Animal Services, Tailwaggers NWA, Taysia Blue Husky & Malamute Rescue, Washington County (Lester C Howick) Animal Services, and Wilson Zoo.  

Local rescue groups and shelters that share the same no-kill philosophies are encouraged to apply to join the coalition.

Since the formation of NWA PAW, over $45,000 has been granted to group members for continuing education, community assistance, wellness, spay/neuter and TNR projects.

NWA PAW will host "Save Them All Sunday" adoption events through the end of the year. Twice per month, member groups will bring adoptable dogs and cats to Core Brewery Taproom in Springdale, AR. Adoption fees are set by each group and each pet comes spayed/neutered, microchipped and vaccinated.                                  

The kick-off event this Sunday, September 29 is from 1-4 p.m. and will feature eight cats from Wilson Zoo and six dogs Springdale Animal Services. A portion of drink sales will go toward the participating groups. For more information on the event or the coalition, visit nwapaw.org.

*No-kill means that at least 90% of the animals entering shelters leave alive, either through adoption, rescue by another group, or return to his/her owner. The remaining 10%, or less, typically are humanely euthanized for severe, untreatable medical or behavioral issues.

Northwest Arkansas Partnership for Animal Welfare  

Northwest Arkansas Partnership for Animal Welfare (NWA PAW) is a group of 25 animal welfare agencies working together to help pets in Northwest Arkansas. The group's mission is to use collaborative public and private partnerships to build and sustain a no-kill community where 90 percent or more of the dogs and cats in the Northwest Arkansas area are saved. NWAPAW is a voluntary association of nonprofit organizations and government animal shelters working toward achieving the mission. Each coalition member maintains its own independent status as a stand-alone 501(c)(3) organization or government agency. For more information, visit nwapaw.org.

About Best Friends Animal Society

Best Friends Animal Society is a leading animal welfare organization working to end the killing of dogs and cats in America’s shelters by 2025. Founded in 1984, Best Friends is a pioneer in the no-kill movement and has helped reduce the number of animals killed in shelters from an estimated 17 million per year to around 355,000. Best Friends runs lifesaving programs across the country, as well as the nation’s largest no-kill animal sanctuary. Working collaboratively with a network of more than 4,000 animal welfare and shelter partners, and community members nationwide, Best Friends is working to Save Them All®. For more information, visit bestfriends.org