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West Jordan Journal

Best Friends Animal Society

Sep 08, 2016 03:42PM ● By Bryan Scott

Best Friends Animal Society began in Arizona during the 1970s with a group of animal lovers unwilling to accept the conventional wisdom that humane societies and shelters "had no choice" but to kill their "unadoptable" animals. 

In the beginning, these animal lovers rescued hundreds of cast-off pets from shelters whose luck was about to run out, rehabilitated them and found them homes. 

Those who did not find homes became a unique assortment of wonderful and lovable creatures whose numbers grew until Best Friends Animal Society was established in 1984 as a large and unique sanctuary at Angel Canyon in Kanab, Utah.

Since then, Best Friends has grown into a leader in the no-kill movement with a mission to bring about a time when there are no more homeless pets by ending the unnecessary killing of dogs and cats in America's shelters and working to save them all. 

Today in Utah, Best Friends leads the No-Kill Utah (NKUT) initiative, operates a pet adoption center in the Sugar House neighborhood, and a spay/neuter clinic in Orem. The Pet Adoption Center in Sugar House opened in July of 2013, and since then, more than 5,000 animals have been adopted there. No-Kill Utah is an initiative of Best Friends Animal Society that, along with a coalition of 56 Utah-based animal welfare organizations, is designed to make Utah a no-kill state by 2019. No-kill status means that animal shelters in the state will have achieved a combined save rate of 90 percent — that is, 90 percent of the animals entering the shelter system leave alive. The other 10 percent typically are euthanized for severe medical or behavioral issues.

“We continue to be astounded by the progress each year toward making Utah a no-kill state,” said Arlyn Bradshaw, Best Friends–Utah executive director. “Our partnerships among rescue groups, shelters, the kitten nursery and community cat trappers will ensure that we will remain on track to achieve our lifesaving goals.”

The initiative includes spay/neuter service for rescued animals, as well as free and low-cost spay/neuter for owned pets. 

Since its founding in 1984, Best Friends has helped reduce the number of animals killed in American shelters from 17 million per year to an estimated 4 million.

Thirty years ago, a group of people made a leap of faith to realize a vision that they had long shared – to create a sanctuary for abandoned and abused animals. 

More than 800 adoptable animals will be featured from multiple shelters and rescue groups at the Fall NKUT Super Adoption on September 30 and October 1, 2016 at the Utah State Fairpark at 155 N 1000 W, Salt Lake City.

 Adoption fees include spay/neuter, vaccinations and an adoption starter kit. Admission and parking are free and adoption fees start at just $25. 

Another event, Strut Your Mutt, will be held at Liberty Park at 700 E 900 S Salt Lake City Saturday, October 22, 2016 to raise money for your favorite local animal welfare group (any of Best Friends’ local NKUT and No More Homeless Pets Network partners) or for Best Friends Animal Society.

This event has been held in Salt Lake City for 20 years. Although it will be hard to surpass the approximately 2,600 people and their 1,800 dogs who came out to strut last year. Together, we raised more than $200,000. Think we can top that? Then get ready!