Santa Barbara Humane Spotlights 2022 as Banner Year for Services and Impact

Santa Barbara Independent

SANTA BARBARA, CA. (2023) Santa Barbara Humane, the County’s longest-serving animal welfare organization, is celebrating another successful year for animals and families. Due to the ongoing loyalty and support of local residents, 2022 was a record year for Santa Barbara Humane. Through its two campuses in Santa Barbara and Santa Maria in 2022, the local non-profit saw the following:

● 20,426 animals received affordable or free expert veterinary care

● 1,031 dogs learned important behavioral skills through free or low-cost humane behavior training ● 1,666 animals were adopted into loving homes

● 722 animals were transferred in from overcrowded shelters

Santa Barbara Humane is an open-admission shelter, meaning owners can surrender their pets regardless of the animal’s age, health, or circumstance. Last year, 1,125 animals – like Snowy outlined below – were surrendered to Santa Barbara Humane through this inclusive policy. Part of the challenge pet owners face in keeping their animals is the barrier veterinary and training costs.

With generous donations and grants, Santa Barbara Humane is able to offer low-cost or free medical services to thousands of pets in Santa Barbara and Santa Maria through the TLC Fund. This fund made a difference in the lives of nearly 4,000 local pets in 2022, a 78% increase from 2021. Because the costs of veterinary care can be prohibitive for many families, this financial assistance ensures more pets can remain healthy and happy in their homes with people who love them.

“At Santa Barbara Humane, we are not just about animal adoption, but also about honoring and supporting the animal and human bond,” said Santa Barbara Humane CEO Kerri Burns. “This includes supporting animal behavior and medical needs. The generosity of the community allows us to connect animals with loving families and to help keep pets with the families who love them.”

Owned pets and shelter animals alike benefited from Santa Barbara Humane’s training and behavior program last year with a 134% increase in the number of dogs enrolled in training classes. While 1,031 dogs attended training classes with their owners, more than 500 shelter animals received specialized behavioral training programs and care while at Santa Barbara Humane, and countless others benefitted from enrichment and attention from training staff.

Classes are designed by the Santa Barbara Humane behavior team to help dog owners address common issues that might lead to an animal being surrendered. Reactive Rover, for example, is tailored to dogs that are easily triggered by sounds, objects, or situations, while the Shy Dog Class provides owners with tools to build confidence and ease anxiety in timid dogs.Certified trainers use only modern and humane training methods.

Santa Barbara Humane is not affiliated with a regional or national animal welfare organization, so the campuses and programs in Santa Maria and in Santa Barbara are locally funded. Donations from community members and local partners ensure the organization can help even more animals in need in 2023.

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