A Message from the Executive Director
I first entered the animal welfare field 17 years ago. When I look back I realize that I have learned many things over the years and have evolved and changed certain opinions and feelings. I also realize that many of my core beliefs remain the same. I started working in an animal shelter after leaving a career in human services. People would ask me all the time “Were you tired of working with people?” I say the same thing today that I said then. “No, I love working with people but working in an animal shelter gives me the opportunity to work with both people and animals."
Which leads me to my first core belief: I believe we will never help animals if we choose to segregate our compassion. The people in our community deserve the same level of compassion from us as the animals receive. The word “humane” is not reserved for animals. To truly be humane we must care for people and animals. I believe that if we treat people humanly they will treat others (people and animals) throughout our community the same way.
Which leads me to another core belief: We will only help animals by working proactively with people. PARL fully embraces the belief that people and animals are inherently good. When we engage and inspire people, that is when we truly meet our mission “….to provide for the rescue and relief of suffering of homeless animals and perform charitable or benevolent acts for the welfare of animals…..” We achieve this by providing innovative programs and services within and outside of the walls of our building.
For instance, adoption and re-homing have always been cornerstone programs of PARL. We have recently streamlined the adoption process and have moved toward a more positive way of connecting people and animals. There are no more lengthy applications and screening processes. Instead, we want to engage in conversation with prospective adopters. If we start from a perspective that people are coming to us with the best intentions we will have a much better success rate of finding life-long matches.
We also show the same respect and understanding to people that are in need of our re-homing services. As an open admission shelter we are here to help people with compassionate and judgment-free support when they are faced with the difficult decision to surrender their animal - whatever the reason. PARL is here to work with people and provide support when needed; it's a partnership. At times, we have found that we are able to keep animals in their homes by providing services or support. Whatever the scenario is we want to have an open dialogue and continue building relationships.
An example of a new program that works for both people and animals is Pets for Life Providence. The goal of the program is to keep animals in homes by providing services to people and animals. It has PARL staff and volunteers visiting areas that generally are not served by animal welfare. We are not waiting at the shelter door for people to come to us. We want to seek out the need and be there to assist. This program truly represents the belief that we can only help animals by working with people. There is nothing better than seeing a happy animal with a person that is overjoyed because you helped them stay together.
I am proud of the track that PARL is on and I hope that you are too. There's much more to come and together we can accomplish so much more.
Mission & History
The League’s mission is to provide for the rescue and relief of suffering of homeless animals and perform charitable or benevolent acts for the welfare of animals. The League accomplishes its mission by providing appropriate shelter and humane care for homeless animals; reducing pet overpopulation through strict spay/neuter measures; seeking permanent, responsible homes for adoptable pets and providing a diversity of humane education programs to meet community needs
The Providence Animal Rescue League is a non-profit organization (501c3) serving communities throughout Rhode Island and beyond. We receive no federal or state funding and rely solely on donations from generous individuals, businesses and foundations to support our work to provide compassionate care, medical treatment and adoption services to more than 2000 animals each year.
Acceptance and Placement of Animals
For a century PARL has been the haven for hundreds of thousands of unwanted, neglected and abused animals in the Greater Providence area. As an open admission shelter we are here to help community members with compassionate and judgment-free support when they are faced with the difficult decision to surrender their pet - whatever the reason. We receive pets that are no longer wanted, pets from people who can no longer care for them and strays that are brought to us by concerned community members. Although PARL is not obligated to assist our state’s Animal Control facilities, we still choose to open our doors and provide services and resources to stray animals and the people that find them.
We provide each animal with a warm bed, compassionate care and take every step possible to place them into a permanent loving home. There are no time limits for the animals here at PARL and we do everything we can both medically and behaviorally to ensure each animal has the best possible chance for adoption. We work with our placement partners (breed groups and other organizations), who find homes for some harder-to-place animals. Unfortunately not every animal we receive can be placed because of dangerous aggressive behavior or an untreatable medical illness or injury. Every year we continue to work hard to provide education and behavioral support to reduce and prevent animals euthanized because of these reasons.
Providing Quality Care
At PARL we believe that being a pet owner requires commitment to providing proper care for your furry companion throughout his or her entire lifetime. Food, regular veterinary care and emergency care and treatment can be expensive and sadly many people find they are not able to keep up with the costs – the animal ends up malnourished or sick and this is often the reason they are surrendered.
Because over 90% of the animals that come into our care are not vaccinated and need to be spayed or neutered we have made healthcare a primary focus here at PARL. Our commitment to providing the best of care to our charges means that we vaccinate all our animals, perform spay/neuter surgeries and provide medical treatment for a multitude of illnesses that range from flea and tick treatment to major surgery. All of this care is provided before they are adopted into their new homes. This high quality care requires a great deal of financial resources to pay for the costs of the vaccines, surgical care and medications but it is an important part of our mission here at PARL. Upon adoption we strongly encourage new pet owners to establish a relationship with a local veterinarian for regular checkups, vaccinations to ensure the health of their new family member continues. PARL provides a list of local veterinarians who offer free first exams to adopted pets and a list of area veterinarians can also be found at RIVMA.
Reducing Pet Overpopulation
PARL is committed to reducing the number of unwanted animals due to pet overpopulation. Back in 1999 we opened our surgical wing on 34 Elbow Street and immediately began to do our part by spay and neutering every animal that was adopted. In 2000 PARL extended our reach and traveled throughout Rhode Island with VMOR our Veterinary Mobile Operaing Room. This mobile spay neuter van helped community members and area shelters with low cost spay/neuter services. Since then thousands of animals have been helped through our community spay neuter program and we still help people with an affordable solutions for spay/neuter through our and helps with referrals to the Rhode Island Spay/Neuter Clinic in Warwick, RI. Visit the Ocean State Animal Coalition for more information.
Humane Education & Community Programs
Our humane education and community outreach programs encourages people of all ages to develop and express attitudes of compassion, kindness and respect for all living things. We travel to schools, clubs and community organizations throughout Rhode Island and the shelter is a favorite place for tours. Visit Humane Education.
Developing a Solid Foundation for Animal Care
Our donors are some of the most caring and dedicated individuals you will ever meet. You can become involved in financially supporting the Providence Animal Rescue League in a number of ways: make a donation, become a monthly supporter or Adoption Angel, participate in a fundraising event or include PARL in your will. These are just some of the ways you can support our efforts. Each gift, large or small, makes a difference in the life of an animal and the community we live in. Visit Get Involved.
Volunteers Make All the Difference
Whether you are interested in direct animal care, special events, customer service or administrative work we can use your help. The PARL Volunteer Program will give you the satisfaction of knowing that you are making a difference in the lives of all animals.
Our Commitment To A More Humane Future
Here at PARL we are committed to continuously working to find solutions that help individuals and families with the information and resources needed to be successful pet owners. We are dedicated to improving the lives of companion animals and with the on-going support from the community we will achieve our goal of a more humane future for all animals.