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2011 Annual Report

















Our Mission We are the best friends of animals. We are a network of more than 850 organizations and thousands of individuals in 50 states committed to one mission: creating a nation of No More Homeless Pets®. For more than 25 years, Best Friends Animal Society has been dedicated to a no-kill philosophy. Our sanctuary in Utah is at the heart of our movement — providing a vision of the future where all communities are sanctuaries for their animals. All Best Friends programs are grounded in this philosophy and work in concert to bring about a time when there are No More Homeless Pets. Through adoption and spay/neuter programs, public engagement and strategic collaboration with rescue groups and shelters, and our dedicated volunteers and supporters, Best Friends is making an impact. Together, we are saving the lives of tens of thousands of animals every year. We are effective because we are more than an organization: We are a farreaching network supported by passionate volunteers and members. That support and collaboration is taking us swiftly toward ending the needless killing of homeless pets and making every community safe for animals. Our success in 2011 demonstrates that working together as a nation, community by community, we can achieve our mission.

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A Message from the Chief Executive Officer Looking back on the successes of 2011, I am reminded that everything that Best Friends does is possible only with the support of our dedicated members, volunteers and No More Homeless Pets Network partners. Collaboration is the key that gives us the national reach and local impact we need to bring about a time of No More Homeless Pets. Our partnership with you is the difference between talking about no-kill communities and making it happen. Consider our partnership with the Feral Freedom program in Jacksonville, Florida. Working with residents, local organizations and the city shelter, the program trapped, neutered and returned 4,100 community cats to their territories. Since the program started, we’ve reduced the number of cats killed by 60 percent — another great step toward ending the senseless killing of homeless pets and making more communities true sanctuaries for all animals. This collaborative program is a model we are working to replicate in communities across the country. Best Friends continues to be the national leader in the no-kill movement, champion­ing solutions that save homeless pets rather than kill them. This year, working with our partners, we made significant headway fighting breed-discriminatory laws, operating pet super adoption events, delivering dogs from puppy mills to safety and organizing public awareness campaigns across the nation. Each program is connected and reinforces the work of other programs. Every day, we grow stronger and larger: This year, Best Friends was named “Non-Profit Brand of the Year” based on the 2011 Harris Poll EquiTrend® Study, the number of our Network partners tripled, and we had record-breaking attendance at our national conference. These accomplishments give me real hope that every year, we truly are closer to a time of No More Homeless Pets. Thank you for your support, which helps us grow and continue our collaborative work to save homeless pets. Together, we are changing society.

Gregory Castle Chief Executive Officer





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National Reach, Local Impact More communities are embracing the no-kill philosophy. Today there are more than 40 no-kill communities in the United States, proving that together we can end the needless killing of homeless pets.

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Best Friends Animal Society spreads our mission of No More Homeless Pets through a strong network of partners (853 nationwide), large-scale events and program grants. In 2011, our efforts helped nearly 900,000 animals.

Alaska (3)

Guam (1)

Hawaii (6)





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Saving Lives Through Adoption More than 9,000 pets are killed in shelters every day because they do not have a home. Every year, Best Friends’ national adoption programs help thousands of animals find loving homes instead of becoming a sad statistic. To an animal in a shelter, adoption means life. Increasing adoption rates in shelters across the country is critical to bringing about a time when there are No More Homeless Pets. Best Friends works with our Network partners to ensure that every adoptable animal finds a loving home. Through events, outreach and grants, Best Friends helps strengthen the effectiveness of our partners’ adoption programs, providing them with vital technical and financial assistance to help get more pets adopted. We also raise awareness to counter misconceptions about hard-to-adopt animals. For example, our national Back in Black adoption promotion helps partner shelters find homes for more black cats and dogs — animals most often overlooked.

So many pets need homes. Best Friends’ programs and promotions focus on raising national awareness about adoption and empowering our local shelter and rescue group partners to increase adoption rates. Demand and participation grows at pet super adoption events every year. Los Angeles’ event was so popular that several shelter vehicles went back to the shelter empty.

QUADRUPLED the number of pets adopted through Best Friends between 2010 and 2011

13,700 individuals and 120 rescue groups and shelters participated in pet super adoption 2011 events

3,400 dogs and cats adopted through Best Friends–sponsored

adoption events across the country such as Back in Black and $5 Felines

206,000 pets adopted through our innovative adoption program in Utah since its inception in 2000

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Finding a Forever Home Every year, Best Friends organizes pet super adoption events in Los Angeles, New York and Salt Lake City. Each event brings together regional shelters and rescue groups for a full day or weekend to showcase hundreds of adoptable animals. We also help shelters from other regions transport undesired animals to events where there is often a waiting list for that animal. In New York, for example, shelters from six Southern states brought animals to this year’s event. Best Friends volunteer Pranathi Aedla believes no family is complete without a dog, so while volunteering at this year’s New York Pet Super Adoption event, she was also keeping an eye out for her perfect dog. She saw many before she came across Smokey, a black and white cocker spaniel wagging his tail. “As soon as I sat next to him, he jumped and sat on me,” says Pranathi. “We knew he had chosen us.” Today, Smokey fits right in with the whole family, including Zoe the cat, whom Smokey adores. Super adoption events give animals like Smokey the forever home they deserve.

Super adoption events give animals like Smokey the forever home they deserve.



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Lowering Kill Rates Through Spay/Neuter Destroying even a small number of healthy animals is not inevitable. By growing spay/ neuter programs around the country, Best Friends is proving that killing is not only unnecessary, it is unacceptable. Fewer animals born means fewer animals entering shelters. It is that simple. Unwanted litters end up in shelters or roaming as strays. Best Friends Animal Society works with rescue groups, shelters and members nationwide to humanely address this root cause of pet homelessness. Increasing the number of spay/neuter procedures is crucial to reducing the number of animals populating shelters and ensuring that more of them have a chance at adoption. Many low-income families struggle to find the money to fix their animals. Best Friends eliminates this barrier by providing grants to local agencies to offer free or low-cost spay/neuter surgeries. These grants help families keep the animals they love, improve animal health and decrease the number of unwanted animals born every year. Best Friends also operates trap/neuter/return (TNR) programs to reduce freeroaming community cat populations. With help from partner organizations, we have implemented this effective approach in dozens of communities from Virginia to California.

As the flagship of a grassroots network of people and organizations that care for animals, Best Friends empowers its partners to implement spay/neuter programs through grants, workshops and hands-on assistance. TRIPLED the number of animals spayed or neutered through Best Friends programming between 2010 and 2011

40,000 spay/neuter surgeries performed in partnership with dozens of our local partners 217,500 cats and dogs spayed or neutered through our Utah program since its inception in 2000

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Compassion for Cats Working with local heroes like Louella, Best Friends is getting closer to a time of No More Homeless Pets.

For years, Louella Jones in Sylmar, California, had been doing the right thing for the community cats that roamed her trailer park. Using her own money and coupons she received from the city, she would get one cat a week fixed. “It was all I could manage,” she says. “Then a friend told me about the Best Friends Free Fix LA program.” The Best Friends team arrived and within days had trapped and neutered the entire community of 18 cats — at no cost — before returning them to the colony. Thanks to Free Fix LA, these cats have the chance to live out their lives, happy and healthy, cared for by Louella and other residents. With help from Best Friends and its national network, communities everywhere are pulling together to reduce the number of animals entering shelters and prove that we can achieve our mission of No More Homeless Pets.



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This year, Best Friends admitted 932 animals to the Sanctuary and adopted out 902. The rest enjoy the Sanctuary as their permanent and happy home.

The Sanctuary: Providing Love and Care for Every Animal Best Friends Animal Sanctuary offers a vision of a future where all communities are sanctuaries for their animals — offering care and rehabilitation before adoption. It started at the Sanctuary in 1984 with the vision that every animal has intrinsic value and a right to a happy and full life. Created as a “home between homes” for hard-to-place or special-needs animals, Best Friends’ 3,800-acre sanctuary in Kanab, Utah, is now the nation’s largest no-kill sanctuary for homeless pets. On any given day, the Sanctuary is a haven for approximately 1,700 homeless pets from all over the country. Many have been abused or abandoned. Every animal here receives the excellent veterinary care and boundless love and attention they need to thrive.

Animals come to the Sanctuary from shelters and rescue groups around the country for the special care and rehabilitation they need.

932 902 241 145 2,952

animals admitted animals adopted injured wild animals cared for by the Wild Friends department released into the wild after full recovery spay/neuter procedures performed by the Sanctuary clinic

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Overcoming the Odds and Finding a Home Animals deserve more than our sympathy — they deserve our care and respect. Even animals whose situations seem hopeless get the chance they deserve at the Sanctuary. Animals like Rhubarb, who arrived as a puppy after being rescued in an animal cruelty case. Badly under-nourished, he faced a host of physical problems, including the inability to walk on his own. Best Friends had the resources to take care of Rhubarb’s special needs. He underwent heart surgery and received a special cart to help him walk. While he still faces challenges, he is now a joyful, loving dog. And, thanks to his considerable charms, he is the adopted pet of Shelly and Edo — a family who loves him for who he is. The Sanctuary is at the core of what Best Friends is all about — a place where all animals get a chance at a full life and the opportunity to find a loving home of their own.





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Inspiring Action to Create Change Public education and advocacy efforts work: In 2007, before Best Friends launched our puppy mill initiatives, there were more than 6,000 licensed commercial breeding facilities. Today, there are less than 2,500. Animals need our voices. Best Friends brings together individuals and humane organizations to act as a united advocate for homeless pets. To motivate change, we educate communities through outreach campaigns, events and advocacy efforts. Consider that 17 million people acquire a pet every year, but only 32 percent adopt from a shelter. Or that animals are still killed in shelters because people accept it. Changing this is a matter of raising awareness. Our efforts are having an impact. This year, we fought breed-discriminatory legislation and gave 500,000 pit-bull-terrier-type dogs the chance to remain in loving homes. We spearheaded the passage of Florida Senate Bill 722, which removed the stigma of “dangerous” from animal cruelty victims seized by law enforcement. And we fought the puppy mill trade with an awareness campaign in three major metropolitan areas. Our outreach also targets pet populations particularly at risk for being killed in shelters — such as pit bull terriers, feral cats and black animals — with events such as Neighborhood Pit Bull Day and Back in Black.

Sponsors like PetSmart Charities joined 13,000 individuals to help make our pet super adoption events successful. This year, more than 1,600 pets were adopted at these events.

Our collaborative partnerships with individuals, communities and Network partners grow every year, getting us closer to a time of No More Homeless Pets.

856 10,000 6,880

partners joined the Best Friends No More Homeless Pets Network — tripling the number from 2010 volunteers in 50 states helped Best Friends care for animals, raise awareness and funds, and save more homeless animals participants in Strut Your Mutt pledge walks raised more than $715,000

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Making a Difference These advocacy and outreach efforts are effective because of the steadfast support of our volunteers and members. Pat Levitt, a supporter for nearly 20 years, has enthusiastically spread the word about Best Friends to her family, friends and community. She takes every opportunity to do her part to raise awareness about the importance of spay/neuter and adoption. A firm believer in the no-kill philosophy, she is inspired by the determination of Best Friends to give all creatures the dignity of a good life. As Best Friends reaches out to more communities across the country, she has great hope for the future. “Great progress has been made,” she says. “I see attitudes changing slowly, but surely.” It is our collective voice, informed and united, that will bring the change we all seek: a time of No More Homeless Pets.




Total Programmatic Efficiency

Statement of Activities 2011 Total

Total ProgramRelated Expenses $36,006,296 (78.7%)

Management and General $2,847,160 (6.2%)

Fundraising $6,926,408 (15.1%)

Note: The figures that appear in the financial summary shown are taken from the 2011 & 2010 financial statements, which have been audited by Ernst & Young. We have received an unqualified opinion for both years. The complete, audited 2011 & 2010 financial statements can be obtained from Best Friends Animal Society website or by calling the CFO at (435) 644-4711.

Revenues and other support: Contributions Program events Donations-in-kind Interest and dividend income Guest cottage and rental income Magazine advertising NMHPU clinic revenue Cafeteria, vending and other income Store income Gift shop income Realized and unrealized net investment return Total revenues and other support


43,601,275 891,395 2,464,008 639,696 509,335 64,367 625,782 124,796 793,256 616,474 – 50,330,384

2010 Total $

41,403,863 722,754 1,124,736 594,643 518,702 197,025 – 158,911 996,275 704,547 992,434 47,413,890

Expenses and losses: Program 1 - animal care activities 19,136,768 Program 2 - emergency response 498,078 Program 3 - campaigns & other national outreach 16,371,450 Management and general 2,847,161 Fundraising 6,926,408 Total expenses and losses 45,779,865

17,413,552 643,716 12,505,556 3,205,764 5,186,173 38,954,761

Other gains, expenses and losses: Guest cottages expenses Store expenses Gift shop expenses Realized and unrealized net investment loss Impairment loss on promises to give Net gain on acquisition of NMHPU Net gain on disposal of assets Total other gains, expenses and losses Total expenses, gains and losses

216,974 1,025,401 438,476 533,491 200,983 (472,447) (1,550) 1,941,328 47,721,193

189,310 1,111,830 451,996 – – – (9,687) 1,743,449 40,698,210

Change in net assets Net assets at beginning of year Net assets at end of year

2,609,191 44,657,799 47,266,990

6,715,680 37,942,119 44,657,799



Statement of Financial Position 2011 Assets Current assets: Cash and cash equivalents Receivables - legacies and bequests Prepaid expenses Inventory Short-term investments Current portion of promises to give Assets held for sale Other current assets Total Current Assets Property and equipment Furniture, fixtures and equipment Automobiles and trucks Buildings and improvements Land Construction in progress Software and website in development Accumulated depreciation Total property and equipment

$ 6,627,340 $ 4,249,468 2,706,810 373,279 245,630 173,097 580,485 323,365 6,312,051 10,067,199 799,519 504,500 – 249,880 122,223 110,178 17,394,058 16,050,966

2,758,896 1,971,424 16,495,501 4,707,117 195,091 1,039,931 (9,955,998) 17,211,962

2,738,677 1,705,463 14,257,757 4,578,117 966,341 547,493 (8,924,615) 15,869,233



8,616,808 5,806,174 341,519 674,034 18,403,315 $ 53,009,335

8,395,448 5,388,544 709,201 674,034 17,900,775 $ 49,820,974

Liabilities and net assets Current liabilities: Accounts payable Accrued payroll Other current liabilities Current portion of long-term liabilities Total current liabilities

$ 2,745,443 $ 1,962,753 328,716 373,941 40,619 171,107 260,688 280,257 3,375,466 2,788,058

Net assets: Unrestricted: Undesignated Designated Total unrestricted Temporarily restricted Permanently restricted Total net assets Total liabilities and net assets

The accomplishments in this report are a testament to Best Friends’ growth as a national organization. As our vision has grown over the years, so too has our strength and credibility. We have garnered national recognition for our achievements and our financial efficiency. In fact, Best Friends continues to meet the American Institute of Philanthropy’s stringent standards for financial efficiency and accountability to qualify as a top-rated charity on


Other assets: Cash - restricted Long-term investments Unrestricted Restricted Promises to give, net of current portion Other receivable - 5 Acres Agreement Total other assets Total assets

Long-term liabilities: Capital leases payable, net current portion Charitable gift annuities, net current portion Other liability - 5 Acres Agreement Total long-term liabilities Total liabilities

From the Board Chair

62,567 1,630,278 674,034 2,366,879 5,742,345

89,702 1,611,381 674,034 2,375,117 5,163,175

21,155,886 17,780,733 38,936,619 5,918,827 2,411,544 47,266,990 $ 53,009,335

21,750,781 15,090,131 36,840,912 6,012,167 1,804,720 44,657,799 $ 49,820,974

Best Friends is committed to being careful stewards of our resources. It is the only way to effectively realize our mission and save more animals. Our resources help elevate the issue of homeless pets nationally and build the strength of our Network. In 2011, we awarded 20 grants to partner nonprofits and shelters nationwide. As I reflect on the impact Best Friends has saving homeless pets across the country, it is astonishing to think that it all started at the Sanctuary with the simple philosophy that every animal deserves a chance at life. Today, as the flagship of a grassroots network of people and organizations that care about animals, we are leading the way to become a nation of No More Homeless Pets. Your support keeps Best Friends strong and secure as together we fight for that day.

2011 Board Members John Fripp Board Chair

John Fripp, Chair Louise Phanstiel, Vice Chair Jim Rodgers, Treasurer Celeste Fripp, Secretary Francis Battista Kraig Butrum Gregory Castle Molly Jordan Koch Pete Warshaw Brian Wolf

5001 Angel Canyon Road Kanab, Utah 84741 435.644.2001 |

Best Friends Animal Society 2011 Annual Report  
Best Friends Animal Society 2011 Annual Report  

Best Friends Animal Society 2011 Annual Report