Resources: Maddie’s® Million Pet Challenge webinars and courses, videos, and other resources cover everything from where we’ve been to where we are now, to how we can keep moving into the future of sheltering.

The 4 Rights:

The foundational principles of the Maddie’s® Million Pet Challenge, the Four Rights, are the Right Care, the Right Place, the Right Time, and the Right Outcome.

Access to Veterinary Care:

All pets and people should have access to veterinary care, yet a recent study found that nearly one-third of pet owners couldn’t afford to obtain that care. Another researcher estimates that 66 percent of pets in families who live in poverty have never seen a vet. And lack of the ability to afford veterinary care for a pet is a leading cause of shelter surrender. The Maddie’s® Million Pet Challenge is focused on creating access to veterinary care for pets in the community, and these resources will help your organization be part of that safety net.

Fear Free Shelters:

The goal of the Fear Free Shelter Program is to improve the experiences of animals by providing a free online educational program to shelter, rescue, and animal welfare employees and volunteers. Its aim is to empower those who work with shelter and rescue animals to apply key strategies and techniques designed to reduce the negative emotional states that are commonly experienced by shelter and rescue animals—including fear, anxiety, stress (FAS), and frustration—and increase their enrichment opportunities.


The Veterinary Task Force to Advance High-Quality, High-Volume Spay/Neuter states, “High-quality, high-volume spay/neuter (HQHVSN) programs are efficient surgical initiatives that meet or exceed veterinary medical standards of care in providing accessible, targeted sterilization of large numbers of dogs and cats in order to reduce their overpopulation and subsequent euthanasia.” These resources are intended to help spay/neuter programs operate at their highest level of quality and efficiency to help as many animals as possible.

Transformational Sheltering:

Most pets enter shelters because of a lack of resources or housing, In traditional sheltering, those animals are housed while awaiting adoption. In the Human Animal Support Services (HASS) model, a safety net for people and pets helps pets stay in their homes and communities. The shelter’s goal is to keep people and pets together whenever possible, taking in only those animals for whom there is no community solution. The videos and other resources we’ve assembled can help make that transformation happen in your organization and community, too.

Click here to play Transformational Sheltering video

Million Cat Challenge:

The Million Cat Challenge was a shelter-based campaign to save the lives of one million cats in North America over the course of five years, a goal its 1,500 participating shelters met in less than four years. The core strategy of the Million Cat Challenge was centered on five key initiatives that offered every shelter, in every community, practical choices to reduce euthanasia and increase live outcomes for shelter cats. These strategies have now evolved as the basis of the Four Rights, which underlie Maddie’s® Million Pet Challenge. Use these resources to learn where we’ve been and how we can keep moving into the future of sheltering.

A collaboration of UC Davis Koret Shelter Medicine Program, Maddie’s® Shelter Medicine Program at UF, Open Door Veterinary Collective, and Team Shelter USA.

Maddie’s® Million Pet Challenge is creating transformative “communities of practice” that deliver access to care through humane, community-centric programming—inside and outside of the shelter—to achieve the right outcome for every pet. Our consultative mentoring services are holistic, deep and practical, and delivered by the proven team who brought you the Million Cat Challenge, in expanded partnership with Open Door Veterinary Collective. This program is made available at no cost to participants, #ThanksToMaddie