Pet-Friendly Sites

In partnership with a coalition of animal rights organizations, we are advocating for pet-friendly shelters and safe havens that allow the co-sheltering of humans and their pets. Our campaign is supported by several members of the City Council, who have introduced legislation to address this pressing issue.


We have heard repeatedly that people ensure the safety and health of their pets over themselves


The problem:

One, [homeless individuals] can give up their pet, possibly the only member of their family, to live in or a subpar shelter.

Or two, they can keep their pet and stay on the streets.

New York City has a completely inadequate approach to supporting homeless people with homeless pets. Under the Fair Housing Act and the Americans with Disabilities Act, service animals and documented emotional support animals are supposed to be able to enter homeless shelters with their owners, but implementation of this policy is scarcely and inconsistently applied. In most cases, shelters do not comply with the bare minimum of the law.

As a result, we constantly encounter homeless individuals with pets on the streets who feel their choices are two-fold: One, they can give up their pet, possibly the only member of their family, to live in or a subpar shelter. Or, they can keep their pet and stay on the streets.

Everyone we meet chooses the latter. Understandably so.

what we’re doing about it:

At the direction of street homeless New Yorkers, we are launching a campaign to keep people and their pets together, inside and safe. There are countless examples across the country of homeless shelters successfully adopting a co-sheltering model that keeps people and their pets together with little to no physical modifications to the space. Co-sheltering is a low-cost policy option with significant success in bringing people and their pets inside and connecting them to the services they need for permanent placement. 

In partnership with a coalition of animal rights organizations, we are advocating for pet-friendly shelters and safe havens. Our campaign is supported by several members of the City Council, who have introduced legislation to address this pressing issue.