Post Office Box 2098, El Cerrito, California 94530
Telephone: 510.525.2744 Facsimile: 510.525.2772

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State Humane Association of California

Our Mission
Lead, empower and strengthen its members through education, training, advocacy, and networking, while serving as the collective voice for California’s humane societies and SPCAs. 


In the News
Oct 17, 2015 - Shelter Pet Official Press Conference.
This weekend was the official press conference announcing ACR 56, the resolution that declared the Shelter Pet the Official State Pet of California. SHAC would like to thank Rob Miller (Director) and John Welsh (Senior Public Information Specialist) at Riverside County Animal Services for hosting such a fun and lively event. Speakers included Assemblymember Eric Linder (who authored the resolution), Madeline Bernstein (spcaLA and SHAC Board), Judie Mancuso (Social Compassion in Legislation), Katie Clearly (Peace4Animals), Rob Miller, and Erica Gaudet Hughes, SHAC's Executive Director. This video contains highlights from the event:

Sept 3, 2015 - California Declares the Shelter Pet as the Official State Pet.
The State Legislature has passed a concurrent resolution declaring the Shelter Pet as the official California State Pet. The resolution, ACR 56, was introduced by Assemblymember Eric Linder (R-Corona). We so are grateful to Assemblymember Linder for his willingness to advocate for animals in need. The Shelter Pet will join California's 37 existing official symbols, ranging from the State Flower (the Golden Poppy) to the State Soil (the San Joaquin Soil). Read the full resolution - ACR 56 and more details in our press release.

April 16, 2014 - Joint Response from California Animal Control Directors Association and State Humane Association of California to Charting a Path Forward: Reaching California's policy to save all adoptable and treatable animals
In early 2012, four animal-welfare advocates formed a group to analyze and make recommendations regarding animal-sheltering practices in light of the suspension of state-mandated funding for animal shelters. An ensuing "stakeholders" group was selected by these four people and the entire process – including the meeting agendas, drafting of a resulting so-called "white paper", and the format of a statewide listening tour – was controlled by this group of four. Ultimately, this "white paper" – a document entitled Charting a Path Forward: Reaching California's policy to save all adoptable and treatable animals – is a reflection of these four peoples' views and priorities. Their views do not represent a unanimous agreement among the members of the stakeholder group itself or California's sheltering community as a whole. Hence, this paper should be viewed as an opinion piece, not as an authoritative document. CACDA and SHAC encourage all readers of the paper to fully understand its history and limitations. We welcome the input of California's animal-welfare community and seek to work with all stakeholders to reach the best result for the people and animals in California. Read the complete joint response from CACDA and SHAC.

January 1, 2014 - Shelter Art Foundation Helps Shelters Take Better Photos
The Shelter Art Foundation's mobile studio has begun traveling around the country with mentors to work with animal shelters' photo teams. The Foundation will visit animal shelters and rescue groups who are interested in learning about making better photos of their adoptable animals. They offer mentoring and the loan of the equipment at no cost to shelters. If your shelter wants to be included in one of their stops contact them at or 831-402-7439. Find out more at

September 20, 2013 - October is Shelter Pet Awareness Month
Senate Concurrent Resolution No. 61 was passed and filed with the Secretary of State. Modified from its original declaration, the resolution now declares October as Shelter Pet Awareness Month.
Read the full text of Resolution 61.

May 3, 2011 - SHAC Files Complaint Against the ASPCA with the Attorney General
The State Humane Association of California announced that a complaint has been filed with the Office of the Attorney General against the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA). The complaint alleges that ASPCA’s unfair and deceptive fundraising practices harm local humane societies and SPCAs by capitalizing on and reinforcing the widely-held mistaken belief that the ASPCA is a parent or umbrella organization to the thousands of humane societies and SPCAs across the country. Read the Press Release

Upcoming Courses

Animal Care Conference 2016
Long Beach, CA: March 5-8, 2016

Animal Law Enforcement Training Academy (Basic)
The Marin Humane Society (Novato, CA): March 14-25, 2016

Animal Law Enforcement Training Academy (Advanced)
The Marin Humane Society (Novato, CA): April 10-15, 2016


Looking for a job in animal welfare? Visit our Careers page for current job openings throughout California.

For information about starting a new career as a humane officer or animal control officer, please read our Humane Officers page.


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Each of the SPCAs and humane societies in the United States is individually incorporated and operated. They are not directly affiliated with each other or with any national groups, such as the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) and the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS).

2005-2014 State Humane Association of California