Women’s Animal Center in Bensalem hosted an open house with activities for people of all ages on Saturday, July 22.
Founded by 30 women in 1869 as America’s first animal shelter, the organization remains a unique space for women to ensure that pets are cared for.
The center’s mission statement reads, “With compassion and caring as our foundation, Women’s Animal Center saves the lives of animals and improves the health of pets through sheltering adoptions, veterinary services, community partnerships, educational resources, and advocacy … we honor the legacy of our 30 women trailblazing founders by ensuring that animals are treated humanely and with kindness.”
Karen Lash, director of development and marketing for Women’s Animal Center, detailed how the open house unfolded. “Women’s Animal Center … showcased our services and introduced our community to the center’s AAHA accredited veterinary hospital serving 13,000 community-owned pets annually, Adoption Center featuring shelter pets waiting for their forever homes and where we hope to create new forever families, dog training, educational community programming and Story tails Reading Program – children read to a shelter pet and provide socialization for that animal waiting for their forever home,” Lash said. “The event was well attended as the community learned about the organization as a center of resources for pets and people, viewed dog training demonstrations featuring our shelter dogs, read to a shelter as part of Story Tails program, and learned how they can support and help sustain the organization serving this community by donating funds, adopting a pet and volunteering.”
Lash also shared some “points of pride” of the center. “We are an AAHA accredited Veterinary Hospital – one of only 15% in North America – achieving high standards of excellence in service delivery,” she said. “Women’s Animal Center helps pet owners in need by donating pet food through a community food pantry.”
Another point of pride within the center is the relationship with children in the community. “The center hosts educational community programs for youth teaching about animal welfare and kindness and respect for animals,” Lash said.
In 2024, the Women’s Animal Center will celebrate its 155th anniversary.
“Our hope for the future is to continue to be a valued ‘center’ of resources for the pets and people of the Bucks County community,” Lash said. “We hope to create enhanced programs and services that engage our community (young and old) to advocate for kindness to animals, protect their welfare and ultimately drive the reduction of surrendered and mistreated animals.”