Best Friends has its roots in England in the 1960s. A few young friends decided to leave family and drop out of the establishment and look for a better way of life.
Bringing along 6 German Shepherd Dogs, they make their way across the Atlantic, first to the Bahamas and then on to the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico.
After a time, some the group were preparing to leave. The dogs remained with the group staying as going back to England was not an option since they would have to be in quarantine for 6 months there. The group leaving for England met once again with the old man with the stick and the dog whom they had encountered much earlier. The old man said to them, “You are leaving. But one day there will be another place for you. It is a beach without an ocean. And the sand is all red. And there are animals. Muchos animales.”
Twenty years later, in 1984, Best Friends Animal Sanctuary was established in Angel Canyon, southern Utah, true to the old man’s prediction. The idea of Best Friends actually began in Arizona in the 1970s when this group of returning animal lovers believed that shelters had other choices than killing unadoptable animals.
It is fitting that the site for Best Friends in Angel Canyon with its pink sand and red canyon walls, was the home of the Pueblo (Anasazi) people thousands of years ago. The Anasazi were a peaceful people as is shown in their petroglyphs, never depicting war or any type of violence.
Best Friends began with 18 people believing in the “no more homeless pets” movement.
Best Friends is the largest sanctuary for homeless animals in the U.S. They accept animals from all over the country and sometimes other countries. The facility is home to about 1700 animals at any given time. Most are dogs and cats, but there are horses, burros, birds, rabbits, goats, farm animals and other creatures.
The aim of Best Friends is to rehabilitate animals and find loving homes for them. Those animals that are too badly traumatized from abusive situations, old, crippled or chronically ill, have a permanent home at the Sanctuary.
Staff and friends of Best Friends are committed to the original ideas of doing the very best they can for animals and finding a better way of life for everyone.
Best Friends offers tours of the facility and visits with the animals daily throughout the year. Tours need to be booked in advance.
Visitors and volunteers are always welcome to give the animals attention and help prepare them for new homes.
Best Friends offers low-cost spay/neuter. They have a mobile spay/neuter unit for the local region. For those interested, there are educational programs, workshops and seminars related to animal care and sanctuary management.
Best Friends depends on donations for its existence. They are tax deductible. link
To donate and for more information, Best Friends can be contacted at:
Best Friends Animal Society, Kanab, Utah, 84741-5000
Phone: 435 644 2001
Fax: 435 644 2078
E-mail: [email protected]