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INTERNATIONAL HOMELESS ANIMALS DAY

History

It was in the Spring 1992 Newsletter that ISAR first announced the program that now, in its thirtieth year, has consistently focused international attention of the dog and cat overpopulation problem: INTERNATIONAL HOMELESS ANIMALS’ DAY, the first and only worldwide event that addresses the urgent need for affordable spay/neuter programs. 

On International Homeless Animals’ Day, ISAR along with animal protection organizations, humane societies, rescue groups, veterinary professionals, caring individuals, public officials, and animal-friendly businesses from throughout the United States, Mexico, Canada and abroad join together to send the spay/neuter and adoption message. This worldwide effort is aimed at halting the euthanasia and suffering of unwanted companion animals. 

Since its inception, ISAR’s International Homeless Animals’ Day has continued to grow and gain momentum in the war against dog and cat overpopulation. To date, ISAR’s International Homeless Animals’ Day observances have been held in all 50 states and the District of Columbia, in over 50 countries, on 6 continents, and on-line.

Recent successes

In 2020 on IHAD, more than 100 observances took place throughout the United States and in 37 countries spanning six continents including: AZERBAIJAN, AUSTRALIA, BRAZIL, CANADA, COSTA RICA, CRIMEA, CROATIA, CYPRUS, ECUADOR, FINLAND, FRANCE, GEORGIA, HONG KONG, HONDURAS, HUNGARY, INDIA, INDONESIA, KAZAKHSTAN, LITHUANIA, MALAYSIA, MEXICO, MOLDOVA, MONTENEGRO, PANAMA, PHILIPPINES, PORTUGAL, RUSSIA, SOUTH AFRICA, SPAIN, SWITZERLAND, TAIWAN, TAJIKISTAN, TRINIDAD, TURKEY, UKRAINE, URUGUAY, AND VENEZUELA.

Animals 360 Foundation received an ISAR grant that assisted in the spaying and neutering of dogs and cats of the Maracas and Las Cuevas bay regions of Trinidad.

According to Roger Marshall, founder of Animals 360 Foundation, “We are pleased to report that we had a very successful IHAD event sterilizing 52 animals in total. We appreciate the assistance from the International Society for Animal Rights in making this event a reality for IHAD and for the communities of Maracas, Las Cuevas that do not have easy access to veterinary care.”

In Kyrenia, Cyprus, Mayor Nidai Güngördü and the municipality’s Children Council visited the city animal shelter to distribute food and supplies to the homeless dogs.

Mayor Güngördü said in a statement, “Every year in August, International Homeless Animals’ Day is observed around the world. Awareness works are being carried out to attract attention to homeless animals. I am calling on all citizens to help the shelter with food donations. Animals here need attention, citizens who want to have dogs don’t buy you can adopt dogs from the shelter.”

Sochi Park in Tambov, Russia was the venue for an exhibition of photographs of pets from the Kind Heart Animal Shelter.

Svetlana Korosteleva, spokesperson for the shelter stated “On International Homeless Animals’ Day we support animals in our region. We hope that they will find homes in the people of our city.”

Firefighters of the 37th State Fire Unit in Pavlograd and State Emergency Services (SES) of Kamianske, Ukraine, united to hold a photo session with homeless animals from the Pavlograd City Animal Shelter.  

 “On the occasion of International Homeless Animals’ Day, we want to raise awareness of the homeless animals, and convey to the maximum number of people information about their tragic fate. We want to emphasize that all animals deserve support and homes,” said the SES.

The New Taipei City Government Animal Protection Department, Taiwan, promoted the importance of companion animal adoption and sterilization to its more than 4 million residents on IHAD through press releases and on the government website.

Hu Jianan, Director of New Taipei City Government noted, “The International Society for Animal Rights has designated the third Saturday in August as “International Homeless Animals’ Day. The problem of stray animals comes from management at the source. On International Homeless Animals’ Day, we promote the responsibility of owners to continue to devote their efforts to homeless animals. Through loving adoption and pet sterilization all parties one day will be able to achieve zero abandonment so that every cat and dog born will have a home.”

The Georgian Society for the Protection of Animals (GSPSA) marked International Homeless Animals’ Day with a candlelight vigil at the Animal Monitoring Agency in Tbilisi, Georgia. Taso Losaberidze, a spokesperson for the organization stated, “On this Day we shed light on the truth about the problems of homeless animals, illuminate forgotten souls (homeless animals), and emphasize the vital importance to manage excess animal populations through sterilization.” 

As a direct result of IHAD, more than 1,000 free spay/neuter surgeries were performed, thus preventing the birth of uncountable unwanted companion animals.

Free spay and neuter events took place in Brazil, Moldova, Finland, Panama, Trinidad, and Venezuela. Together with the sterilization surgeries that took place on International Homeless Animals’ Day, organizations, veterinarians, and municipal government officials provided vouchers to the public for subsidized and free spay and neuter surgeries.

Humane-minded government and elected officials used the occasion of International Homeless Animals’ Day to promote positive changes for animals in their local communities, through declarations and other activities.  

For example, Congressman Daniel Donizet of the Federal District of Brazil used the occasion of International Homeless Animals’ Day to file eleven bills at the Legislative Chamber of the Federal District.  The proposed measures addressed free castration, combating ill-treatment of animals and support for institutions that care for abandoned animals.

In St. Petersburg, Russia, Governor Alexander Beglov, stated “On International Homeless Animals’ Day, I visited one of the city’s shelters.  I have also met with members of the city government and instructed them to create two additional state shelters for stray pets. We will support the shelters at the city level with subsidies, and social advertising.”

Recognition by local and state officials of the importance of each year’s International Homeless Animals’ Day is a vital part of keeping the issue of spay/neuter before the public, and moving pro-animal laws through legislative bodies. Several animal protection organizations were presented with signed proclamations declaring August 19, 2017, as “International Homeless Animals’ Day.”

U.S. Virgin Islands Gov. Kenneth E. Mapp proclaimed Aug. 19 as International Homeless Animals’ Day in the Virgin Islands, consistent with the observance by the International Society for Animal Rights. He called attention to the suffering of abandoned and homeless animals and the issue of pet overpopulation awareness. Mapp’s proclamation noted that millions of unwanted dogs and cats are euthanized at U.S. animal shelters each year because homes cannot be found for them.

In sum, there is no doubt that as a direct result of our International Homeless Animals’ Day countless shelter animals have found permanent loving homes, and thousands of pets are now spayed and neutered. All saving millions of animals’ lives.

ISAR is extremely grateful to all who participated in the Day and to the many media outlets, individuals and others who helped ISAR promote its 29th annual International Homeless Animals’ Day and convey the important message of spay/neuter and adoption through radio and television, newspaper articles, blogs, social networking, websites, and in other ways.

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Individuals, organizations and animal-friendly businesses wishing to take part in ISAR’s International Homeless Animals’ Day events can order a complimentary downloadable event planning packet by contacting ISAR by mail, phone, fax or email. Our IHAD event planning packet includes guidelines for organizing a successful awareness event with tips on site selection, suggestions for speakers, reaching target audiences, poems, songs, sample press releases and more! Do not miss out on ISAR’s free IHAD Planning Packet – contact us for one today!

In addition to your downloadable copy of ISAR’s International Homeless Animals’ Day vigil packet you will receive our IHAD posters to advertise your event, Proclamations to be signed by your governor and mayor declaring the day as International Homeless Animals’ Day, coloring sheets and more through the U. S. Postal Service. Your participation in ISAR’s International Homeless Animals’ Day will guarantee advertisement of your organization’s event to thousands of people on ISAR’s website, as well as promotion on ISAR’s online communities such as Facebook and Twitter.

By coming together on International Homeless Animals’ Day, you can support ISAR in letting the world know we will not tolerate the senseless killing that continues to take the lives of innocent dogs, cats, puppies, and kittens simply because there are not enough good homes for them.

 

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