San Diego Humane Society

Inspire Compassion

aka San Diego Humane Society & SPCA   |   San Diego, CA   |  www.sdhumane.org

Mission

Create a more humane world by inspiring compassion, providing hope and advancing the welfare of animals and people.

Ruling year info

1938

President and CEO

Dr. Gary Weitzman

Main address

5500 Gaines Street

San Diego, CA 92110 USA

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Formerly known as

Escondido Humane Society

PAWS San Diego

Project Wildlife

PAWS San Diego County Inc

North County Humane Society & SPCA Inc

Escondido Humane Society & Center for Humane Education

EIN

95-1661688

NTEE code info

Animal Protection and Welfare (includes Humane Societies and SPCAs) (D20)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Blog

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

San Diego Humane Society is committed to ensuring that San Diego County maintains zero euthanasia of healthy/treatable shelter animals. The tremendous work needed to maintain zero euthanasia will never end, and each of our programs plays an integral role in our ability to save the life of every treatable animal and serve as the safety net to all animals in our county. We are committed to developing innovative solutions that address the root causes of pet homelessness. We are committed to expanding our role as a leader nationwide in setting standards of companion and wild animal care. Our areas of distinction include the first-of-its-kind Kitten Nursery, San Diego County's only Behavior Center and Project Wildlife.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Veterinary Services and Community Spay/Neuter

Providing world-class veterinary care is a hallmark of San Diego Humane Society and is an essential component of our lifesaving work. Whether it is a basic vaccination, a spay/neuter surgery or complicated orthopedic surgery, our highly skilled veterinary team is there to assist each one of the thousands of animals that come through our doors every year. Veterinary services are provided for our companion animals to prepare them for adoption and for wildlife to ready them to return to the wild. Additionally, we serve the community through our Wellness Center, which provides low-cost community spay/neuter services and other veterinary procedures.

The Veterinary Medicine Department’s role in allowing us to achieve our ambitious goal of Getting to Zero cannot be overstated. Without the resources to support our veterinary team, we would not be in a position to continue to ensure that no healthy or treatable animal in San Diego is in danger of being euthanized.

The demands on our veterinary staff are extraordinary as they look to meet the needs of the nearly 36,000 companion animals and 10,000 wild animals we serve on an annual basis. And, this impact only increases when we consider the approximately 6,000 community spay/neuter surgeries we provide annually. As pet overpopulation results in thousands of homeless animals each year, every single one of these surgeries is a step toward reducing the occurrence of unwanted or unplanned litters in our community.

Population(s) Served
Adults

San Diego Humane Society’s Kitten Nursery is the only one of its kind in the country, and it has saved the lives of over 20,000 kittens since its inception in 2009. The Kitten Nursery has established our organization as a national leader in solving the challenges that shelters face in working with this fragile population of animals.

While we have achieved significant success in helping kittens throughout San Diego County, the Kitten Nursery is also providing a model for other shelters nationwide to emulate. By making our philosophies, policies and practices replicable and available to interested organizations around the United States, we hope to translate our success to the global sheltering community and influence an increase in lives saved nationwide.

This specialized facility provides the around-the-clock care that these delicate animals need to grow into happy, healthy adults, whether they arrive directly at our facility or are transferred from surrounding shelters.

Population(s) Served
Adults

San Diego Humane Society’s Behavior and Training program plays a central role in our commitment to rehabilitate animals and eliminate unnecessary euthanasia of healthy and treatable animals in San Diego County. This vital program ensures the mental and behavioral well-being of all animals in our care, helping them to be happy and healthy and prepared for adoption into loving homes more quickly.

A key component of the program is our Behavior Center, which is dedicated to specialized training for animals who display shy/fearful or defensive behaviors, kennel stress or reactivity while in the shelter environment. The goal is to rehabilitate these animals by providing the training and behavior modification they need to become ready for adoption. All animals enrolled in the Behavior Center receive customized, one-on-one sessions with a trainer every day to remedy their behavioral issues and ensure they were afforded every opportunity to be adopted into a loving home.

There is no other animal behavioral rehabilitation center like this in San Diego, making us the only hope for hundreds of our community’s most at-risk animals who would otherwise be unadoptable. What’s more, our center is one of only two in the country, allowing us to share these lifesaving practices with organizations nationwide.

Population(s) Served
Adults

San Diego County is one of the most biologically diverse areas in the United States, with the greatest number of endangered species. When these animals are injured and/or orphaned, the first line of defense to save their lives is Project Wildlife. Each year, this program provides more than 13,000 wildlife – from raptors to squirrels and raccoons – the best opportunity to receive the nurturing care they need to survive. This care may include veterinary treatment, injury rehabilitation or simply a safe place to grow up.

Our goal is to return every animal Project Wildlife treats to their natural habitat to lead a full life. Every one of these animals plays a vital role in preserving our local ecosystem, maintaining the San Diego region as one of the most incredible nature preserves in the world. Without our intervention, many of the species we help face an uncertain future.

Population(s) Served
Adults

San Diego Humane Society’s Humane Law Enforcement is often the first line of response when animals suffer. The team has officers in the field seven days a week, dedicated to protecting animals throughout San Diego County, either by enforcing animal cruelty and neglect laws, or by placing them in appropriate homes.

While our primary focus is educating owners about proper care for their animals, we ensure every animal receives care as required by law. Animal cruelty encompasses behavior ranging from neglect or hoarding to malicious killing. Humane Officers can exercise the powers of a peace officer while investigating animal-related crimes, and our team responds to nearly 2,000 reports of animal cruelty every year. And, our Humane Officers also respond to and rescue animals from disasters in San Diego and surrounding areas with the assistance of San Diego Humane Society’s Emergency Response Team.

In addition, animal complaints for the cities of San Diego, Carlsbad, Encinitas, Del Mar, Solana Beach, Santee, Oceanside, Vista, El Cajon, Escondido, Poway, San Marcos and Imperial Beach are handled by Humane Officers of San Diego Humane Society. Our field service officers respond to calls regarding loose animals; injured animals; captured domestic animals within our jurisdictions; neglected animals; animal bites; and rescuing animals during disasters.

Population(s) Served
Adults

San Diego Humane Society is committed to 100 percent of the homeless animals in our community. Our transport program allows us to transfer healthy and treatable animals into our facility from other local shelters and rescue organizations. Once in our care, the animals receive medical or behavioral intervention that otherwise may not have been possible, giving them the second chance they deserve.

Population(s) Served
Adults

San Diego Humane Society is committed to its role as a safe haven for thousands of homeless animals in our community, providing veterinary and behavioral support, nutritious food, tender loving care and, when they are ready, new homes with loving families. We provide refuge and hope for lost and found animals, owner relinquishments, treatable animals transferred in from animal welfare partners and animals seized through Humane Law Enforcement.

Population(s) Served
Adults

San Diego Humane Society's support services help people keep their pets. In the field of animal welfare, shelters are recognizing that our opportunity is not just to place pets in homes, but to help loved pets stay in their existing homes, even if their owners are facing hardship. We offer help and hope for people who are facing financial and physical adversity that make it nearly impossible for them to care for their pets alone. We ensure that these at-risk, caring pet parents have the support they need to keep their animal companions at a time in their lives when they desperately need love and comfort, and would be devastated at the thought of turning over their pets to someone else.

We accomplish this goal through a variety of services, which include a Community Pet Pantry, veterinary assistance, homeless support and outreach in underserved neighborhoods. We provide these support services free of charge to vulnerable people and pets throughout San Diego County.

Keeping pets at home is about more than just providing much-needed companionship for our clients. Pets offer a vital lifeline during times of crisis and help our clients to maintain a productive and positive quality of life. Our support services oftentimes stand between a pet owner and that sad trip to a shelter to turn over their beloved companion.

Population(s) Served
Economically disadvantaged people

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of sheltered animals

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Adults

Related Program

Animal sheltering and adoptions

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Companion animals are received through owner relinquishments, transfers from other agencies, rescues for their protection and through stray animal contracts.

Number of animals spayed and neutered

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Veterinary Services and Community Spay/Neuter

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This includes spay/neuter surgeries for San Diego Humane Society animals and Community Spay/Neuter initiatives.

Number of animals with successful outcomes

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This includes adoptions, animals returned to their owners and animals transferred to other agencies.

Number of wildlife cared for

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Related Program

Project Wildlife

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This metric represents the number of sick, orphaned and injured wildlife cared for through our Project Wildlife program.

Number of people served by programs

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

This is the number of people impacted by our services, including Community Spay/Neuter, Humane Law Enforcement, Education, Pet-Assisted Therapy, Adoptions, PAWS, Behavior & Training, etc.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

1. Staying at Zero: Never euthanizing a healthy or treatable animal is our commitment, now and always. In San Diego, no animal will lose its life for lack of space or treatment options.

2. Excellence and Innovation: We will set the national standard for animal care and create innovative solutions to address the most pressing challenges facing animals.

3. Shelter: It is crucial to create and maintain facilities that provide for quality of life for every animal with us, reduce their stress and fear levels and protect them from the elements.

4. Community: We must grow philanthropic relationships that support our programs and allow us to effectively plan for the future. Endowments allow us to build a permanent base of support that offers stability in perpetuity.

1. Lead in the field of animal welfare through innovative programs that impact animals in San Diego and beyond. Strategies include:

Kitten Nursery: Establish this first-of-its-kind program as the leader in developing care practices that save the lives of neonatal kittens, and disseminate these practices widely.

Behavior and Training Program: Develop this unique program for at-risk animals who would otherwise be unadoptable, and share this model broadly to save animal lives everywhere.

Project Wildlife: Establish our leading wild animal rehabilitation center as an example of the successful integration of wild animal care into a shelter organization, reinforcing the success of wildlife programs nationwide.

Animal Care and Adoptions: Create a new standard for animal care and ensure our facilities and staff exceed those standards daily.

Humane Law Enforcement: Institute a nationally leading program for community education and animal protection/rescue that demonstrates lifesaving practices to law enforcement and animal services forces across the country.

2. Save lives by ensuring that no healthy or treatable animal is in fear of euthanasia in San Diego County now or ever. Strategies include:

Veterinary Medicine: Maintain our provision of world-class veterinary care that prepares companion animals for adoption, and wild animals for return to their habitats.

Community Spay/Neuter: Reduce the incidences of unwanted litters who end up homeless by increasing reduced- and no-cost spay/neuter surgeries provided to target communities.

Support services: Reduce the incidences of loving pet owners needing to surrender their pets by providing support and resources that allow these owners to feed and care for their pets despite financial or medical hardship.

3. Build for the future by investing in the infrastructure that protects our animals and welcomes our community.

4. Sustain the future of San Diego Humane Society through unrestricted, current-use and endowment gifts.

San Diego Humane Society has been meeting the needs of people and animals since 1880, making us San Diego's oldest nonprofit organization. With campuses in San Diego, Escondido and Oceanside, San Diego Humane Society has extensive reach for animals throughout our region.

San Diego Humane Society is a leader in animal welfare locally and nationally. As the largest city in the country to have achieved zero euthanasia of healthy and treatable animals, we care not just for animals in our communities, but also share the expertise we have gained through our unique programs with shelters nationwide so they can save more lives in their communities. This includes our first-of-its-kind Kitten Nursery, which has saved the lives of more than 10,000 kittens since its inception in 2009. The Kitten Nursery has established our organization as a national leader in solving the challenges that shelters face in working with this fragile population of animals. Another key program is our Behavior Center, which is dedicated to specialized training for animals who display shy/fearful or defensive behaviors, kennel stress or reactivity while in the shelter environment. There is no other animal behavioral rehabilitation center like this in San Diego, making us the only hope for hundreds of our community's most at-risk animals who would otherwise be unadoptable. What's more, our center is one of only two in the country, allowing us to share these lifesaving practices with organizations nationwide.

San Diego Humane Society continues to increase its reach for animals locally and nationally through our unique, innovative programs. The overarching initiative that drives all of our efforts continues to be Getting to Zero, which ensures that no healthy or treatable animals in San Diego County shelters are at risk of unnecessary euthanasia. The tremendous work needed to maintain zero euthanasia will never end, and each of our programs plays an integral role in our ability to save the life of every treatable animal and serve as the safety net to all animals in our county.

Program accomplishments in FY 2020 include:

31,871 homeless companion animals - including dogs, cats, rabbits, guinea pigs and more - were admitted to San Diego Humane Society.

12,612 wild animals were cared for by Project Wildlife.

1,456 neonate kittens received a second chance in our 24-hour Kitten Nursery during the 2019 season.

601 animals were enrolled in our Behavior Center, where they received specialized training to overcome shy, fearful and other challenging behaviors.

16,799 spay/neuter surgeries were performed for animals in our care and owned by members of the community.

2,024,013 meals were provided to pet families in need.

20,400 animals received help from our Humane Law Enforcement team in the field.

4,560 animals were placed in foster homes until they were ready for adoption.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • Who are the people you serve with your mission?

    San Diego Humane Society serves more than 40,0000 companion animals and wild animals each year, and we also serve a wide range of people throughout San Diego County. This includes people who adopt a pet, volunteer at our shelters and donate to support our work. We also serve low-income pet owners by providing low-cost veterinary services and resources needed to keep their animal companions. Additionally, people throughout San Diego rely on us for licensing, Humane Law Enforcement, humane education, behavior and training, lost and found services and general animal welfare questions and concerns.

  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Paper surveys, Suggestion box/email,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve,

  • What significant change resulted from feedback?

    We revamped and increased youth volunteer opportunities after receiving feedback that we weren't offering enough options for youth who wanted to support our mission.

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    Our staff, Our community partners,

  • How has asking for feedback from the people you serve changed your relationship?

    We are primarily seeking feedback from people who participate in programs such as youth education and community outreach. Seeking feedback has given our constituents a voice in how best to serve their needs and strengthened our partnerships within the community.

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We act on the feedback we receive,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback,

Financials

San Diego Humane Society
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

San Diego Humane Society

Board of directors
as of 10/19/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

David Lynn

Eve Benton

Richard Bockoff

Lynn Pechet-Bruser

Anne Liu

Jodi Smith

Tori Zwisler

Colleen Blackmore Reilly

Emily Rex

Susan Davis

Dee Anne Canepa

Steve Bernitz

Sharon Blanchet

Dana Di Ferdinando

Julie Ruehle

Faye Wilson

Kenneth Cohen

Michael Green

Randi Rosen

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 08/09/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Male
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

Equity strategies

Last updated: 08/09/2021

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We measure and then disaggregate job satisfaction and retention data by race, function, level, and/or team.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.