Rescue a Shelter Animal

William Mattar with his dog peanut butter

William Mattar Pet Photo Contest


Rescue a Shelter Animal

Pets are beloved family members who bring years of happiness and joy to their families. They provide us with companionship and emotional support, which may reduce stress levels and feelings of loneliness. Pets stand by our sides during times of need, often posing the question, who rescued who?

As the cold weather moves in, William Mattar Rescue a Shelter Animal campaign highlights the importance of rescuing an animal in need from local shelters and rescues. All animals deserve a safe, warm and loving home. *Despite the hard work of shelters and rescues everywhere, it is estimated that millions of dogs and cats enter America’s shelters each year. Please consider rescuing or fostering an animal, making a donation, or volunteering at a local shelter or rescue. Every little bit helps.

(*Estimate is based on Shelter Animals Count data.) 

2019 Pet Photo Contest Winner

william mattar and sue rogers

Pictured: William Mattar with 2019 Pet Photo Contest winner, Mackenzie, and her owner, Sue Rogers.

2018 & 2017 Pet Photo Contest Winners

2017 and 2018 pet contest winners

Pictured: Left – 2018 Pet Photo Contest winner, Bentley, and his owner, Mark. Right – William Mattar with 2017 Pet Photo Contest winner, Gina, and her owner, Fran, and friend Boo.

Animal Shelters Try to Keep Up

Animal shelters and rescue groups are humane places overflowing with happy and healthy animals waiting for a home. The majority of animals that end up in shelters are usually there through no fault of their own and because of a human problem, such as divorce or a move. Many animals living in shelters are already house-trained and used to living with families, children and even other animals.

According to the Humane Society of the United States, “Each year, it’s estimated that more than one million adoptable dogs and cats are euthanized in the United States, simply because too many pets come into shelters and too few people consider adoption when looking for a pet.” Most animal shelters do their best to take in unwanted pets and rehome them, but the costs associated with medical care, food and shelter add up making the task monumental for everyone involved.

Rescuing a shelter animal not only gives the animal a second chance in a happy home, but you may also save it from being euthanized in an overcrowded shelter. By taking home a new pet, you also make room at the shelter for another animal with nowhere else to go. This is especially important for senior pets as they typically get a bad reputation because of the stigma associated with their age and potential growing medical needs. This causes them to have an extended stay at shelters, but it does not necessarily mean they are not loving and loyal companions.

At William Mattar Law Offices, we encourage the public to not only consider rescuing a shelter animal, but to donate to shelters in order to help offset the tremendous costs associated with helping these animals find forever homes. Financial donations can give shelters the support they need to provide food, shelter, and medical care to homeless animals. Shelters and rescues are also in need of volunteer support.

More Than Just Dogs and Cats

The humane work conducted by animal shelters and rescue groups extends well beyond traditional dog and cat pet options. More and more shelters and rescues have opened their doors to other animals, including guinea pigs, rabbits, birds, and even horses and livestock. If you are interested in opening up your home to a rescue animal but are looking for something a little bit different, a great resource to start with is The Pet Shelter Project.

The Benefits of Rescuing a Shelter Animal are Endless

If you or your family is looking to bring another little smile into your lives or maybe find your next best friend, then we encourage you to visit your local animal shelter or rescue.

When you adopt a pet, the cost of a spay/neuter, first vaccinations and even microchipping may be included in the adoption fee. This may help save you some upfront costs when adding a new furry friend to your home. The animal you select may also be housebroken, which will allow you to save on training expenses.

If you buy a dog from a pet store, online seller or flea market, you may be getting a dog from a puppy mill. Puppy and kitten mills are factory-style breeding facilities that put profit above the welfare of dogs and cats. Animals raised in puppy and/or kitten mills are housed in poor conditions with improper medical care, which may cause numerous medical or behavioral issues as a result. Mills confine the moms of these animals to cages to be bred over and over, without human companionship and with little hope of ever joining a family.

Puppy and kitten mills will continue to operate until they lose support. By rescuing a pet from an animal shelter, you will have peace of mind knowing that puppy and kitten mills will not be profiting.

ASPCA Facts:

  • Approximately 6.5 million companion animals enter U.S. animal shelters nationwide every year
  • Approximately 3.2 million shelter animals are adopted each year
  • Approximately 40% of dog owners and 46% of cat owners learned about their pet through word of mouth
  • Approximately 23% of dogs and 31% of cats are obtained from an animal shelter or humane society
  • About 710,000 animals who enter shelters as strays are returned to their owners

Helping Shelters is More Than Just Rescue

Many animal shelters are overcrowded, underfunded and in need of support. Most rescue groups do not have brick and mortar facilities and depend strictly on foster homes for shelter and care. This can make it difficult to place animals in forever homes.

Overcrowded shelters take in millions of stray, abused and lost animals every year, and by adopting an animal, you’re making room for others. Not only are you giving animals a second chance, but the adoption fee goes directly towards helping the shelters provide better care for the animals.

William Mattar Law Offices offers many helpful resources to help you find a shelter close to you. When you are ready to open up your heart to a furry friend and give an animal a forever home, we sincerely encourage you visit a local shelter or rescue group.

Shelter Animal Resources

We have links to over 100 shelters and rescue groups in the Buffalo, Rochester, and Syracuse areas. If you know of a rescue group or shelter that you do not see listed below, please email [email protected] with the organization’s name and website link, and we will be glad to update our list.

In addition to rescue efforts, the shelters listed below welcome donations, supplies, and/or volunteers. Please visit their respective websites for more information.


Buffalo & Western New York Animal Shelters and Rescue Groups

Rochester Animal Shelters and Rescue Groups

Syracuse Animal Shelters and Rescue Groups

Resources for Pet Owners:

Animal Advocates of WNY

Animal Alliance of Greater Syracuse

CNY Pet Food Pantry

Emergency Animal Rescue

Hope Before Heaven may provide aid for emergency vet care bills in certain situations

Operation Pets spay/neuter clinic in Blasdell

Pet Emergency Fund

Pet Heaven Funeral Home

Sherlock Bones Lost & Hound Dog Recovery

White Whiskers Senior Dog Sanctuary can also temporarily board an animal after an emergency (like a fire). All are encouraged to visit the animals for cuddle time and some furry company.

Wild Kritters of Niagara County wildlife rescue & rehabilitation