ISAR Autumn 2016 Newsletter

i November 11, 2016

President’s Message

Dear Friends,

Since ISAR’s founding in 1959 it has not wavered in our commitment to improving the lives of animals through legal, legislative and educational efforts. The latter, public education about animal rights, both theoretical and practical, has long been a primary activity of ISAR, and will continue to be an important part of our programs. For instance:

ISAR’s New Spanish Language Outreach Program

Joining ISAR’s other efforts against dog and cat overpopulation is our new “Spanish Language Spay/Neuter Program.” Through it—and partnering with our friends at Advancing the Interests of Animals— ISAR expects to reach the countless individuals and families throughout the United States who are custodians of intact dogs and cats. At present, our program consists of four elements.

First, we will be enlarging our existing outdoor advertising program by designing and then installing in selected venues throughout the United States custom-designed, eye-catching Spanish language billboards carrying ISAR’s companion animal overpopulation and spay/neuter solution messages. Our billboard placements will emphasize installation in population centers where there are considerable numbers of Spanish- speaking men and women living and working.

Second, again in partnership with Advancing the Interests of Animals, we are broadening our current Public Service Announcement program, which in the past has been supported by celebrities such as the late Steve Allen and the animals’ long-time champion Bob Barker, to reach listeners of Spanish-speaking radio stations in such states as Arizona, California, Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas. Our scripts are being rewritten, and will be distributed as Public Service Announcements to hundreds of radio stations with a predominantly Spanish- speaking audience.

Third, sometime in 2017 we will be expanding our new Spanish Language Outreach Program outside our borders to the many nations throughout the world where that language is spoken.

Fourth, ISAR is translating all of its model spay/neuter and related statutes into Spanish, and will make them available to animal protection individuals and organizations in Spanish-speaking venues with request that they be enacted into law.

With our new program, we hope to spread the message here and abroad that companion animal overpopulation is a curse, and that a powerful weapon against it is spay/neuter.

ISAR’s Spay/Neuter Billboards Are Drawing Attention!

As part of ISAR’s initiative to increase our audience and raise awareness about the perils of pet overpopulation and its spay/neuter solution, ISAR has been diligently working with outdoor marketing companies around the globe to expand our spay/neuter educational reach.

ISAR’s Spay/Neuter Billboards Are Drawing Attention!

Using one of the most efficient means of advertising, this year alone close to 100 of ISAR’s brightly-colored spay/neuter billboards have been installed along busy highways
and roadways, and on the sides of buildings, throughout the U.S. and abroad. In 2016, ISAR has posted our striking billboards in locations throughout Indiana, South Carolina, Tennessee,Oklahoma, California, Florida, Alabama, Virginia, West Virginia, Arkansas, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, Idaho, Kansas, Montana, Rhode Island, Michigan, Arizona, Washington, Wyoming, Nevada, across the border in Canada, and overseas in Ireland. Photos of ISAR’s billboards that have been installed can be found on our website,, under the “gallery” tab.

In ISAR’s Summer 2016 Newsletter we mentioned that ISAR’s billboards have received a positive response from people who have encountered them. Most recently, Linda C., Montana, thanked ISAR for our public service campaign. She went on to say, “Thank you for posting spay/neuter banners in our area. Life Savers Animal Rescue has an aggressive spay/neuter program and appreciates any and all support.” We are happy to help!

ISAR’s billboards are a great way to advertise shelter events, spay/neuter clinics, or for simply sponsoring the spay/neuter message. If you or your organization are interested in participating in ISAR’s Spay/Neuter Billboard Campaign, email ISAR at today!

ISAR’s International Homeless Animals’ Day®

ISAR’s International Homeless Animals’ Day® (IHAD®) 2016 was commemorated for the twenty-fifth consecutive year on August 20th in more than 22 U.S. states, Canada, and numerous foreign locations including several places throughout Africa and South Africa, Dominican Republic, France, Malaysia, Mexico, Panama, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom.

Since 1992, on the third Saturday of August, ISAR has commemorated International Homeless Animals’ Day in an effort to shed light on the pet overpopulation epidemic that affects people and communities on a global scale. Spay/neuter, the theme of the Day, is a proven solution that greatly reduces the numbers of unwanted cats, dogs, puppies and kittens running rampant in the streets and clogging shelter systems, ultimately resulting in mass killings simply because there are not enough good homes for those animals.

Dedicated rescues, animal protection organizations, and concerned individuals band together with ISAR on the third Saturday of August each year to raise a collective voice for the animals. Time and again, poignant vigils light the night in solidarity, such as the Defenders of Animals International Homeless Animals’ Day observance in Rhode Island this year. The young and old gathered to pay homage to individuals and organizations whose service to animals often times goes unnoticed.

A ceremony of gratitude at Defenders of Animals 2016 event paid tribute to humane heroes, including members of RI Canine Search and Rescue Team, Warwick Animal Hospital, a news anchor of NBC 10 in Providence, a local rescue, and others, were handed personalized plaques honoring their tireless efforts. During an interview with The Cranston Herald, Dennis Tabella, Director of Defenders of Animals, was quoted as saying, “We have always believed in this credo: The smaller the victim, the bigger the crime. I have always taken the side of the underdog, and there is no greater underdog than the dogs and cats that are waiting for homes at our shelters or those poor souls that walk the streets and throughout our neighborhoods without the love and security from a human being.” Defenders of Animals commemorated their 20th annual International Homeless Animals’ Day observance in 2016.

A moving candlelight vigil shed light on pet overpopulation at Defenders of Animals 20th annual IHAD event. Photo courtesy of The Cranston Herald.

A moving candlelight vigil shed light on pet overpopulation at Defenders of Animals 20th annual IHAD event. Photo courtesy of The Cranston Herald.

ISAR’s IHAD is often utilized as a perfect time to launch new spay/neuter-related programs and campaigns to bring about positive change for animals. Asociación Nacional Protectora de Animales Costa Rica and Cat Lovers RD launched a Spanish language humane education program with a basis on proper pet care to be installed in various schools throughout nearby Samaná in the Dominican Republic on International Homeless Animals’ Day.

Excited and hopeful about this new humane education program, Isabel Gorski-Grobe, associated with Cat Lovers RD proclaimed, “Teaching local people wherever they are that the love for animals does a lot to prevent homeless animals and cuts down the need to re-home outside the country.” During the week leading up to IHAD, Cat Lovers RD along with the Association for Aid and Support of the Creole Dogs, performed more than 190 spay surgeries, preventing untold thousands of unwanted animals from being born.

Members of Cat Lovers RD proudly display their banner during their first IHAD event in the Dominican Republic. 

Members of Cat Lovers RD proudly display their banner during their first IHAD event in
the Dominican Republic.

Rainy weather didn’t put a damper on SOS Chats 11th annual IHAD observance in Neuchâtel, Switzerland. With more than 300 people in attendance, including local politicians, members of animal rescue groups, artists, musicians, and others, SOS Chats hosted an information stall promoting spay/neuter. Each year, SOS Chats utilizes IHAD as a platform for gathering many signatures for their ongoing petition campaign supporting an amendment to a current law that would prohibit the practice of hunting feral cats as a means of “population control” in Switzerland. To date, SOS Chats has collected thousands of signatures.

Uber (a taxi-hailing application that connects riders to drivers via smartphones) and street dog rescue, Embark, took an unconventional approach in commemorating IHAD this year in Sri Lanka. People in Colombo, Sri Lanka’s capital, were offered the opportunity to choose UberPUPPIES, a selection within the app that offered participants a 15-minute visit with an adoptable puppy accompanied by an Embark representative. People from various businesses and homes took part in this initiative while learning about the need for pet adoption and to volunteer at local rescues. As a result, several puppies were adopted into loving new homes.

Special Thanks

ISAR sincerely thanks all humane-minded elected officials who have taken the opportunity to encourage their citizens to act responsibly by having their pets spay/neutered. ISAR is especially grateful to the Virgin Islands Governor, Kenneth Mapp, for proclaiming Saturday, August 20, 2016, as International Homeless Animals’ Day. ISAR would also like to send a heartfelt thank-you to Mayor John A. Miller of Fernandina Beach, Florida, for presenting Cats Angels Inc. SPCA with a signed proclamation not only declaring August 20th as International Homeless Animals’ Day, but all of August 2016 as International Homeless Animals’ Month. In California, several animal protection organizations were presented with signed proclamations from Mayor William R. Bailey and Councilmember Mike Gardner declaring August 20, 2016, as International Homeless Animals’ Day in Riverside County. We ask our dedicated IHAD event planners to encourage elected officials who have not yet acknowledged the problem of pet overpopulation and the importance of spay/neuter, to take a stand alongside ISAR and sign our proclamation!

Thank you to all news media, tv and radio personalities, bloggers, and concerned individuals who provided a great service to animals in honor of IHAD 2016 by promoting the adopt-a-thons, spay/neuter clinics, candlelight vigils, and other events taking place all around the globe. ISAR is grateful to all of you who took to social media supporting ISAR’s International Homeless Animals’ Day campaign, including actress, producer, and animal advocate, Katherine Heigl, whose post about International Homeless Animals’ Day garnered more than 32,000 likes and shares over several online platforms. International Homeless Animals’ Day would not have the global outreach it needs to continue to make a positive difference in the lives of companion animals if it weren’t for our dedicated and driven coordinators and supporters.

IHAD® – August 19, 2017

Please join us in commemorating ISAR’s 26th annual International Homeless Animals’ Day!

ISAR extends a warm invitation to all of our veteran event coordinators, as well as to a host of new ones, to join us on Saturday, August 19, 2017, in commemorating ISAR’s 26th annual International Homeless Animals’ Day. Please contact ISAR by mail, phone, fax, or email to receive an IHAD 2017 planning packet.

Together we will continue to be a voice for the animals and continue to demand an end to the suffering and exploitation inflicted on animals each day.

Susan Dapsis
ISAR President

Download the Autumn 2016 Newsletter as a .PDF