Sanctuaries & Rescue Organizations


Sanctuary, a place of refuge and protection

.... Webster

Why we need sanctuaries:

The Breeder Pig


US Sanctuaries

    A sanctuary can be heaven or hell, depending on the commitment, the financial resources and the business knowledge of the management. Love for animals is only the opening hand, and often not a very good one. Most hoarders and sanctuaries who have gone "bad" with too many animals and not enough of everything else, began with a sincere love of the animals. People we read about every day, with animals being packed up and sent off to heaven knows where when the bank takes over the farm did not start out to put any of those animals in danger.

Use a critical eye to evaluate any place that you may be sending an animal to spend the rest of his life. Ask questions, look at records, ask to speak to the sanctuary veterinarian(s), ask about the animals you see, who they are, how long have they been there, and be sure to ask what day of the week is best to visit your pet in the years to come.

If they require money to take your animal, be sure to ask how it will be used and how much it costs to feed and care for an animal of that kind. What kind of feed do they use? How much is spent on preventative care?  Will he get arthritis medication? Preventative dental care? Is everyone spayed and neutered? (mandatory for pig health, may not be required or even possible in some other species)

Any sanctuary who takes offense at any of these questions or cannot answer them or show records and certificates of registration with the IRS and State may not be on the up and up.. Don't worry, the "good guys" are thrilled when a "pig parent"  shows some genuine concern about the future of their pig.

Do they have the physical resources (land, water, topography)  for the numbers and kinds of animals they have? See Chart . While only a tool for maintaining forage health, if their land looks "poor" you may want to ask about how they supplement the grazing.  Good hay is always available, even in the summer months.


   Is it a good place? How to check

  • Ask for information; the names and contact info of the Board of Directors, pictures of the sanctuary facilities, a copy of the IRS 501C3, local recommendations.
  • Verify the IRS information on line at greencheck_vr.gif
  • Check with the individual state's Secretary of State office for state certification   In Tennessee it's greencheck_vr_1.gif
  • Check with the American Sanctuary Association. They will be able to guide you. greencheck_vr_2.gif
  • Check with local Animal shelters and vets
  • Check with the USDA for complaints filed or settled in court.
  • Ask other sanctuaries who deal with the same type of animals.