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Virginia Federation of Humane Societies

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animal Protection & Welfare, Animals

Mission: The Virginia Federation of Humane Societies leads an alliance committed to providing mutual support and to acting collectively as the voice for animal welfare in Virginia. Our Vision is to be the leading advocate for ending unnecessary euthanasia of cats and dogs and advancing animal welfare throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Results: Through active efforts to engage localities, the Federation has grown in membership every year and currently has 132 member organizations and individuals representing all areas of the state. By providing an annual conference each year, with presentations and workshops provided by national and state recognized animal welfare leaders, the Federation has provided an affordable way for all members, e. g. shelter and rescue personnel, and animal control officers to receive training, learn about best practices, and to build a network across the state. Notable accomplishments throughout the years: • Ensuring the passage of the Animal Welfare Act of 1977; • Establishing a humane investigator course, administered by the office of the State Veterinarian; • Influencing the passage of mandatory rules and regulations for city/county pounds in Virginia; • Holding annual training conferences for members, animal control officers, and humane investigators that include courses that qualified for animal control officer and humane investigator continuing education; • Regularly alerting and educating members and the general public about problems relating to animal protection; • Assisting in the establishment of Action 81, a Virginia-based organization that monitored and exposed pet theft nationwide; • Assisting member organizations in planning new shelters and renovating existing shelters; • Assisting member organizations in developing spay and neuter programs, fund-raising projects, shelter operations and volunteer programs; • Working to improve the Comprehensive Animal Laws; • Participating in the development of a model disaster preparedness plan for animal welfare organizations and animal control agencies.

Target demographics: homeless animals

Direct beneficiaries per year: thousands of homeless animals which are served by our 125+ shelter and rescue agency member organizations.

Geographic areas served: the Commonwealth of Virginia

Programs: Spay/Neuter Grants, TNR, Transfer and Transport, Advocacy, Education and support to our member organizations.

Community Stories

3 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters


Rating: 5

The VA Federation of Humane Societies is an exemplary animal welfare organization that works tirelessly for progress for animals in the Commonwealth. I have been a member for 2 years and am continually impressed by the professional advocacy and leadership provided by VFHS on behalf of our homeless animals. The Federation provides expert testimony and a steadfast professional presence during VA state legislative sessions. They communicate legislative updates to their members in real time so I always know that as a member, I am informed and that our concerns are well represented in the VA House of Delegates.

The VFHS annual conference is an excellent opportunity for folks concerned about animal welfare to attend invaluable workshops presented by national and regional animal welfare leaders. The conference offers an impressive selection of presentations and workshops that offer state of the industry training and dialogue with other professionals. Multiple workshops are offered so attendees have a selection of topics and the training sessions meet professional training requirements for animal control professionals in our state. VFHS is THE resource for the very best in animal welfare in our state!
Melinda See, Advocates for Valley Animals


Rating: 5

The Virginia Federation of Humane Societies is an amazing organization who awarded the Humane Society of Shenandoah County $2,000 in spay/neuter funding. HSSC was able to use this funding to fix three cat colonies this past spring and into summer. HSSC is proud to be a long standing member of the Federation!

General Member of the Public

Rating: 5

Animal Resources of Tidewater (ART) has been the fortunate recipient of several spay/neuter grant awards from VFHS. Their exciting annual conference has afforded us the opportunity to keep up to date about the newest ideas and practices in animal welfare . VFHS keeps us informed about problems/issues in VA as well as shares the successes of the many lifesaving animal welfare agencies throughout Virginia and the country.