Inhumane treatment of animals is unfortunately all too common around the world. Animals have feelings just like people and do not deserve to be discarded or abused. Kind workers at the shelters and organizations below work diligently to rescue and save animals in Washington, D.C. and surrounding areas. If you find a stray, call one of the numbers below for immediate assistance in finding the animal a loving, welcoming home. For those who wish to adopt an animal, there are plenty in need of care.

Animal Welfare League of Arlington
2650 S. Arlington Mill Drive
Arlington, VA 22206
(703) 931-9241

The Animal Welfare League of Arlington, or AWL for short, is an organization that partners with the community to provide shelter and care services to a wide array of animals. The rescue facility welcomes all animals in need and aims to place them with adoptive families. Not all animals have been mistreated or abandoned, often lost pets are taken to the shelter for safekeeping until they are, hopefully, united with their owners. The AWL takes consideration into where animals are placed, attempting to find true compatibility. Keep in mind that the animal shelter adoption at AWL is closed on Tuesdays.

City Dogs Rescue
2121 Decatur Place NW
Washington, DC 20008
(202) 567-7364

Technically, City Dogs Rescue is not a shelter. This is because volunteers save dogs from being euthanized at shelters and then put them into foster families or boarding facilities. Scheduling an appointment with City Dogs rescue is essential because all available dogs are with temporary caretakers until permanently relocated. Those interested can see pictures and information of all dogs up for adoption on the organization’s website. City Dogs Rescue strongly encourages volunteers interested in partaking in efforts to submit an application.

Friends of Homeless Animals
Friends, P.O. Box 415
Aldie, VA 20105
(703) 385-0224

A Northern Virginia no-kill shelter, Friends of Homeless Animals, FOHA, saves dogs and cats. With proper veterinary treatment, heated and air-conditioned kennels and communal catteries, FOHA is a unique environment. There can be over 100 animals at any given time, all appropriately supervised to receive necessary shots and neuters. Adopters must pass an interview process and home visit. In case something was to happen, all adoptions have a lifelong return policy.

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Lucky Dog Animal Rescue
3220 N St. NW #353
Washington, DC 20007
(202) 741-5428

With the help of Lucky Dog Animal Rescue, you can take home a new dog in less than a week. For safety reasons, there is a brief screening process for all applicants. The dogs are pulled from shelters, boarding partners and foster homes. Lucky Dog also participates in many adoption events in the DC area.

The Washington Animal Rescue League
71 Oglethorpe St. NW
Washington, DC 20011
(202) 726-2556A

Coming up on a century of service, The Washington Animal Rescue League is Washington, DC’s oldest animal shelter. The league is special in that it truly tries to rehabilitate the traumatized animals through emotional, social and physical healing programs. After a dog or cat is properly readapted, an adoption personnel works closely with families to confirm a smooth transition. Each potential new owner must complete a survey, online or at the shelter, that aims to match pets and adopters based on lifestyle and other important factors. Volunteer counselors are on site to answer all questions.

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Kelly Johnston is a freelance writer living in D.C. She graduated from the University of Alabama with a degree in Fashion Retail and Merchandising and a minor in Journalism. Her work can be found at