7 Warmhearted Animal Organizations In The American Southeast

As stewards of the Earth, it's on us to protect and care for our animal friends. Whether they live in the wild or snuggle up to us at night, a lot of effort is required to make sure these creatures are safe. The following organizations do meaningful work in their communities to strengthen the bond between people and animals, offering vital services with compassion and kindness. This video was made with Ezvid Wikimaker.

7 Caring Animal Organizations in the South

Name Location Focus
SAFE Haven for Cats Raleigh, NC No-kill shelter serving 15 counties, with feral vaccination program and pantry offering free pet food
Save the Manatee Club Maitland, FL Works to protect manatees and their aquatic ecosystems through education and advocacy
SPCA of Wake County Raleigh, NC Finds homes and offers spay/neuter services for dogs, cats, bunnies, guinea pigs, chinchillas, and other small animals, and runs pet loss support groups for owners
Paws4People Foundation Wilmington, NC Trains and provides service dogs for children, adolescents, veterans, and service members with disabilities, and operates Paws4Prisons program for inmates to participate in training
SPCA Tampa Bay Largo, Clearwater, St. Petersburg, and Palm Harbor, FL Operates multiple sites caring for a wide variety of animals with adoptions, veterinary services, and behavioral training
Furkids Atlanta & Alpharetta, GA Gives shelter and care to cats and dogs while helping them find forever homes, including cats diagnosed with feline immunodeficiency virus
Humane Society of Charlotte Charlotte, NC Adoption, microchipping, vaccinations, and spay/neuter services, as well as behavioral counseling

Jimmy Buffett for Save the Manatee Club

Pet Statistics for the United States

SAFE Haven for Cats on What To Do if You Find a Stray Cat

In Depth

Humans and animals have lived among each other since time immemorial. For many people, one of life's greatest joys comes from the companionship of a pet. With so many of these creatures both inside our homes and outdoors, it's no surprise that a whole industry exists dedicated solely to their care. If you are interested in discovering more about the work being done to help our furry friends, then here are, in no particular order, seven warmhearted animal organizations in the American Southeast.

At #1 is Safe Haven for Cats, founded in Raleigh, North Carolina in 1994. From its humble beginnings in the garage of founder Pam Miller, the no-kill animal shelter today serves over fifteen counties in the state. It has orchestrated the adoption of over 10,000 cats and spayed or neutered more than 30,000 felines at its own low-cost clinic, which also offers microchipping services.

Safe Haven provides additional options for local feline lovers, including a trap-neuter-vaccinate-release program for feral cats and numerous services for strays. Furthermore, pet owners who are struggling to make ends meet can avail themselves of Safe Haven's Pet Food Pantry, which gives free cat food to anyone in need. If you are interested in supporting Safe Haven, you can volunteer your time, sign up to foster a cat, or even attend one of its many events, like its annual Casino Royale fundraiser or Kitten Palooza.

Furthermore, pet owners who are struggling to make ends meet can avail themselves of Safe Haven's Pet Food Pantry, which gives free cat food to anyone in need.

Coming in at #2 is Save the Manatee Club, established in 1981 by singer Jimmy Buffett and politician Bob Graham. Based in Florida, this nonprofit aims to recover and protect manatees, the state's official marine mammal, and their aquatic ecosystems in Florida and other parts of the world. Beyond promoting habitat restoration, the organization seeks to minimize harassment, injuries, and deaths of manatees caused by humans and to advocate for laws and regulations that protect these animals and their environments.

Save the Manatee Club's website features a variety of resources for lovers of these aquatic mammals, including detailed information on how to report an injured manatee and a collection of public awareness materials and tips for divers and swimmers. Those who are interested in supporting the organization can make direct donations online, purchase apparel from the website's shop, or sign up for its Adopt-A-Manatee program.

In the #3 spot is the Society for the Protection of Cruelty to Animals of Wake County, located in Raleigh, North Carolina and founded in 1967. With the mission of creating a more humane world through protection, care, and education, SPCA of Wake County strives to ensure that every adoptable animal finds a suitable home. Each year, the organization re-homes over 3,700 animals through its programs.

Each year, the organization re-homes over 3,700 animals through its programs.

In support of its mission, SPCA of Wake County, which works with cats, dogs, bunnies, and other small animals, runs a range of programs in addition to adoption services. Its Saving Lives Spay-Neuter Clinic has performed procedures on more than 62,000 animals, while its community initiatives offer resources for owners dealing with pet behavioral problems. It also hosts a Pet Loss Support Group for grieving owners. If you wish to support SPCA of Wake County, consider shopping for pet supplies at its retail store or attending its annual Fur Ball Gala.

At #4 is Paws4People Foundation, based in Wilmington, North Carolina. Founded by Kyria Henry in 1999, Paws4People connects assistance dogs with children, adolescents, veterans, and service members with disabilities. To date, the nonprofit, a full member of both Assistance Dogs International and Animal Assisted Intervention International, has placed over 500 dogs with one or more certifications in twenty-six states.

Each Paws4People dog goes through a rigorous training process that lasts over two years, and 93% of dogs enrolled end up graduating. Other programs that the foundation runs include the Paws4Education initiative, which provides educational animal-assisted instruction in schools, and Paws4Prisons, where inmates, many of whom suffer from PTSD or CPTSD, participate in the training, managing, and supervising of assistance dogs. If you want to lend a hand to this canine nonprofit, you can apply for one of its volunteering opportunities or sign up to receive updates from its eNewsletter.

Each Paws4People dog goes through a rigorous training process that lasts over two years, and 93% of dogs enrolled end up graduating.

In the #5 spot is SPCA Tampa Bay. A non-profit animal welfare agency, SPCA Tampa Bay operates a variety of sites in the area, including a shelter in Largo, a veterinary center in St. Petersburg, a behaviorial center in Clearwater, and a resource center in Palm Harbor. Founded in 1940, the organization cares for more than 8,000 surrendered animals each year.

SPCA Tampa Bay works with a large number of animals, like cats, dogs, goats, pigs, and exotic birds. Its veterinary center, for instance, offers comprehensive medical care, from routine vaccinations and examinations to acupuncture. Meanwhile, the New Dawn Animal Behavior Center hosts private training sessions and a six-week puppy preschool. Those who are interested in contributing to SPCA Tampa Bay's efforts can donate items from the organization's wish list, sign up for a "Whiskers at Work" playdate, or attend the fundraising Pet Walk.

At #6 is Furkids, founded by Samantha Shelton. With headquarters in Atlanta, Furkids gives rescued animals medical care and a temporary place to live while helping them find a permanent home. A no-kill shelter, the nonprofit has rescued more than 35,000 animals since it opened doors. In 2018 alone, it succeeded in releasing 98.2% of its animals alive.

In 2018 alone, it succeeded in releasing 98.2% of its animals alive.

Running the largest no-kill, no-cage cat shelter in the Southeast, Furkids specializes in cats diagnosed with feline immunodeficiency virus, and is one of the only facilities in the area dedicated to their care. In the interest of strengthening the bond between animals and young people, Furkids is the only animal shelter in the Atlanta area that allows children of all ages to volunteer. If you are interested in supporting this organization, you can sign up to receive its newsletter, shop at or donate to its thrift store, or attend one of its events, like the Paws for Cocktails fundraiser.

Last but not least, at #7, is the Humane Society of Charlotte. Founded in 1978, this nonprofit with a no-kill philosophy strives to strengthen the bond between companion animals and the people who care for them. HSC offers several services for both pets and strays, including a trap-neuter-return program for outdoor cats in the community and microchipping and vaccinations at its low-cost Critter Care Wellness Clinic.

Beyond these services, the Humane Society of Charlotte also boasts a robust educational program. Its pet behavior-enrichment program ensures the proper training and socialization of animals waiting for their forever homes, and the organization has published numerous informational articles on common behavioral issues for cats and dogs. If you want to learn more about the Humane Society of Charlotte or contribute to its efforts, you can check its website to find opportunities about fostering an animal or you can make a gift online.