Like any industry, when it comes to animal services, there are some concepts that are commonly misunderstood. One of the most prevalent misunderstood concepts is the difference between a rescue and a shelter.

Shelter vs. Rescue … What’s the Difference?

Simply put, an animal rescue organization is dedicated to pet adoption. Animal rescue groups take unwanted, abandoned, abused or stray pets and work to find them suitable homes. Many rescue groups are created by and run by volunteers, who take pets into their homes and care for them until a suitable forever home can be found. These volunteers train the pets, play with them, manage their medical issues, solve behavior problems and more. They’re heroes!

Animal shelters are a bit different. A municipal animal shelter houses stray and abandoned animals, as well as pets that people can no longer care for, on behalf of local governments. A no-kill shelter is a specific, usually private, organization which specifies that no healthy, pet-worthy animal can be euthanized.

Hear our Executive Director, Christie, explain the difference between the two:

What is Karma Cat + Zen Dog?

We are proud to be an animal rescue organization! 

Through the help of our leadership and animal care volunteers, board members, donations, and grants, we are able to operate our foster, spay/neuter, trap-neuter-return, and education programs to further our mission. We are an entirely volunteer-run, New Jersey-based 501(c)(3) nonprofit.

Our mission is to provide a safe and peaceful haven for homeless, abandoned or abused animals. We will help decrease the number of cats and dogs being destroyed in kill shelters through the work of our foster, spay/neuter, trap-neuter-return, and education programs.

Our vision is a world where every companion animal is respected, fed, warm, happy, and not in danger of being killed because it is temporarily homeless.

Click here to learn more about us, our volunteer opportunities and our adoptable animals!

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