Donors Save Lives - You Are Their Guardian Angels

Paws-itive change for a better future ~ donor sponsored

 'Shelter'/Humane Society & Whiskers' Shop

*Proudly serving over 3,000 pets and people each year!

A registered 501 (c) (3) no-kill organization ~ saving lives since 1998

Voted Top 10 In Massachusetts!

As seen in, Cat Fancy Magazine and on CNN News

Where saving lives starts with YOU!

 Wareham, MA ~ 508-291-PAWS

P O Box 387, Buzzards Bay, MA 02532

We love to hear from you:

Make A Difference - Donate Today!

Credit Card donations are easy, simply click on the PayPal button below.

*Note: Paypal does take a small portion of your donation - if you are making a donation of $100 or more you can make sure the pets get every penny by mailing to the below address.

Or A Helping Paw, Box 387, Buzzards Bay, MA 02532

Want your donation matched by your employer? Click link below:

We Are Excited to Announce Our Office/Donation Center!

9 St Margarett's St, Unit 7B, Buzzards Bay, MA

Open Mondays from 3 -6, & Saturdays 9-1 PM

More hours & days coming soon.

   Our new facility is only about three minutes from our last location, keeping it local.  A very special thank you to our volunteers  for giving up so much of their valuable free time, ( Sue, Mary, Amanda, Ernie & Patty, Barbara, Janice, , Theresa & Chrissy) They know how important it is to continue providing life-saving services to all the pets who would otherwise not get the help they need. And to the donors who helped support our campaign, while we haven't yet met our goal, it is with your support that we were able to secure a building. And all of YOU who stuck with us, giving us  your kind support!
We will be holding adoption days and meet and greets - times and days to be announced. For an active list of pets available, please come like our facebook page. We are adding new pets all the time, many in urgent need. 

For daily updates come 'like' us: click above

Your purchases helps care for 100's of pets

This was such a fun program for us. Together over 150 cat & dog toy bags were given out to several food pantries including Damien's Food Pantry of Wareham! We thank everyone who helped with this wonderful program that gives the gift of play to so many deserving pets! New toys provide both physical activity and mental stimulation, improving a pet's health. Thank you for helping us make a fun holiday for all!

It takes TWO!

When we heard about little Cooper, a Chinese Crested & Buddy a senior Rat Terrier who's mom had passed leaving them with no home, it truly broke our hearts. A family member stepped up and did the best she could for this pair, but she suffered her own tragedies and was in urgent need of finding them both loving homes. Generally small dogs are highly desired, but we knew  their ages posed a huge issue in addition to them both requiring medical care.

We are so pleased to say with A Helping paw's help and of course the kindness of our donors, both Buddy and Cooper have found new loving homes! Cooper enjoys time with his new family and the very first night he snuggled in bed with their son. Cooper, now named Shaggy, has a new brother. A 12 year-old Soft Coated Wheaten Terrier and they get along great! We would like to thank everyone who helped these two special dogs find such loving homes and for those who donate that make it all possible! 

Adoption Hours: Please call if you have a special pet in mind. We prescreen prior to making appointments to ensure each pet is a match.


Ask about our special feline friends, low  adoptions fees!

A Helping Paw works with many 'special' pets who are at high-risk of being put down at traditional shelters due to medical or behavioral issues. A win-win for everyone. This allows already over crowded shelters to focus on more adoptable pets and at AHP it provides a pet who simply needs a little more care and or time to get a second chance at LIFE. Please consider adopting a 'special' friend.  

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Thank you all who shop & donate - all to save homeless pets.

In a perfect world there will be no more homeless pets. Yet, with over 100 years of animal sheltering we still have a pet overpopulation problem. AHP knows adoption is not the only answer - after all, isn't it better to prevent animals from entering shelters in the first place -  we must provide community services that will STOP animal neglect, abuse and abandonement.

At AHP we strongly feel that YOUR donated funds should help as many homeless pets as possible.  We are proud to say we run a "NO-FRILLS" facility, where the pets always come first!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

 ~ Adoption Center~ Pet Placement Services~Rescue

Pet Education & Information ~ Seniors 4 Seniors program

Community Services~ Free Pet Food & Low-Cost Spay/neuter for cats

Bringing a no-kill future to all pets!   

Become a friend to the pets ~ get updates & special offers 'LIKE" us @  A Helping Paw Humane Society

PAY for your spay/neuter certificate here:

Yes, even duck rescue: Click here. 

Click the above link & save $$ and share with your friends




A Helping Paw Humane Society chosen 1 of three Ma, shelters in Aremen's "Biking for Animals" tour 2013.

 The tour has ended:  A Helping Paw would like to thank Armen for making us part of his life-saving journey.



 Battling to Save Their Lives

There is never a day off when it comes to saving lives...each and everyday we face the reality of pets in desperate need of our help. Knowing that every situation is urgent - with precious lives at stake - we must act quickly.  if we don't act quickly they risk losing their lives.They are crying out for help, knowing we may be their last hope.

They desperately need your help! With so many people facing financial struggles, donations are at an all time low, leaving us tragically underfunded. Our medical fund to treat all new arrivals is nearly depleted. These pets have suffered greatly - neglect, starvation, abuse - loving and precious - they don't deserve to lose their lives. All they ask is for a second chance, a chance to feel loved, safe and secure. Please, please reach deep into your heart and make the most generous donation you can. Please do it today, many of these pets can't wait until tomorrow. Imagine, just one minute of your time to make a donation may give a pet another 15 years in a new loving home.

Click on this link to show your support: Give

 Every year millions of $$ are spent housing unwanted cats & kittens, it's estimated that 70% of them will be destroyed.

It can cost a shelter $100 or more to care for just 1 cat or kitten.Yet, for $100 we can spay/neuter and save the lives of hundreds more! Spay 1 female cat and ultimately prevent 100's more from ever needing to go to shelters. Animal shelters are supposed to be to protect abused and stray pets. Sadly, they are becoming the dumping ground for people who simply no longer want their pets. With so many unwanted pets why would anyone allow their pet to have more!

A Helping Paw is taking vital steps to give them their lives back!

Please send your donations to:

A Helping Paw/ Box 387, Buzzards Bay, MA 02532


Who we are:

Our volunteers are a dedicated bunch with one thing in common - they adore homeless pets and want to be active in saving lives. Our volunteers backgrounds are as unique as they are - many have been forced into early retirement due to medical issues - instead of sitting at home they share their time with us , giving back to the community. Some are much younger and required to complete community service, at the same time sharing a deep respect for our furry friends. Others are in the managerial field and either manage corportations or own their own businesses. We've had everyone from RNA's to self published writers and everyone between.

While most organization have full-time staff members to run their organziations and use volunteers as 'helpers'. Our directors ARE volunteer! And because it takes a team to save lives, our volunteers help  "RUN' our organization.

Please thank them for their generous gift to our pets!



Volunteers may come and volunteers may go, but each and every one leaves paw prints to always be remembered...Thank You to all who have touched the lives of animals

Want to help us raise funds for homeless pets? You can - come volunteer in our re-sale shop! Share your talents with our pets and have fun speaking with other pet lovers.



*A note from our founder:

Often times I'm asked, what got you started in animal rescue?" Many years ago, driving home from work, I spotted an orange tabby cat dart in front of the car in front of me. They had plenty of time to apply the breaks or gently swerve, but  they didn't. The cat was tossed into the air and landed on the side of the road. Not once did  the driver look back - they left the cat like garbage on the side of the road. I placed the injured stray on my passenger seat and rushed to the nearest vet. The stray cried out, not so much in pain but more so in attempts to communicate. I knew he was dying  - he knew he was dying. Not having the thousands required just to stabablize the cat, he was put out of his suffering. It broke my heart - not because this life couldn't be saved - but more so at how many people treat these precious animals like garbage. I did the best I could, for 45 minutes this cat did have someone who cared enough. So many more cats and kittens suffer just like him - they try to survive on the streets. Most people ignore them, some  will pick up the phone looking for a shelter to 'come get them' - if the shelter doesn't have enough volunteers or money - the cats or kittens are just left there. I'm no different than anyone out there - I have a family, my own personal pets and a job. The only difference may be is over 15 years ago I chose to take an active role in saving lives by becoming a full-time, volunteer  and you can too. A Helping Paw was founded on the idea that it takes much more than a shelter to save lives - it takes a community.

Please join us  by volunteering, donating and or adopting - join our family!

            Felines Fighting For Their Lives

So much has changed over the years since AHP was founded. You no longer see "FREE" puppy ads - dogs now have value, actually so much so that people now make a living as dog transporters.

Our feline friends have yet to enjoy the luxury of being valued.  Sadly, we've only seen it get worse for our adoring feline friends. Cats far out weigh dogs as the number 1 pet euthanized at our shelters by a very large margin. They are also most likely to be left abandoned on the streets forcing them to live a horrible life of fear and hunger. And many heartless people who acquire free kittens refuse to spay/neuter them, feeling the cat isn't worth it.  After all, if the cat has kittens, they can just keep one of the kittens and dump the cat.

Cats share the same emotions and devotion to their owners that dogs do, by nature they simply express it differently. They are not pack animals so they don't need to 'bow down' to the leader and become submissive. When a cat shows its emotions to a human, these are raw, true emotions - out of real adoration. Sadly, few cat keepers take the time to really bond with their cats so their kitty may not feel truly adored and choose to remain very independent. Anyone who spends a great deal of time with their cat quickly learns you can 'read' each other - no words needed, just like our K-9 companions.



More than ever these precious animals need your support, they are crying out for help  please Don't turn your back on them. Please join us in our efforts to rescue as many as we can. Often times it takes small efforts from many that make the biggest difference!

It feels so good to save - especially to the life we've saved!

A truly special thank you to those who continue to provide support. It warms our hearts and helps us to know we are not alone in this battle to save lives.  Often times it does feel like a battle and we get bumped, bruised and scarred along the way. We've faced things so sad and heartbreaking they will never leave our memories.  But, along the way we've seen so many, many miracles that help lessen the pain. Pets that have survived horrific abuse, now wag their tails or purr in our ears. Pets once so emaciated and left for dead, now lick the faces of their new pet parents. Kittens in the wild too fearful to play, now romp and chase their siblings - safe and sound.

 How they can give unconditional love after all they have been through can teach us that acts of kindness can heal the soul.

FUN day for the pets. Photographer Heather Lynn came to do a photo shoot of the pets! She had a great time, taking over 200 shots of our adoptable pets. And the pets loved all the extra attention! These are just a few of her shots, join us at to see more!

visit her page at:   





Make A Difference - Donate Today!

Credit Card donations are easy, simply click on the PayPal button below.

*Note: Paypal does take a small portion of your donation - if you are making a donation of $100 or more you can make sure the pets get every penny by mailing to the above address.

Or A Helping Paw, Box 387, Buzzards Bay, MA 02532


Why is spay/neuter so important?

Each year millions of dollars are spent housing stray, unwanted pets, only to be destroyed when homes can't be found. It is a vicious cycle - born only to suffer and be destroyed. You've seen the commercials, you've seen the photos - millions of dollars are spent advertising these pets so you can see the faces that suffer. Sadly, if people didn't see their faces they wouldn't feel the need to help. Wouldn't it be wiser to prevent the suffering and deaths  in the first place?


Imagine for a moment what could happen if we took that same millions and used it for spay/neuter instead. One unaltered pet leads to thousands more in their life-time. Imagine if we altered thousands and thousands of pets - millions of lives would be spared. Ultimately spay/neuter is the wiser choice, it has the ability to finally put an end to this crisis - it is cheaper to alter one pet than it is to destroy thousands. Animal sheltering has become big business - lets make it small business again - it's time for a change - we need you to help make that change.

*Did you know? According to our statistics, over 90% of the cats and kittens abused, neglected, abandoned to the streets or surrendered have not been altered? Why could this be? It's simple - there is such an overflow of them they are easy for anyone to obtain. People who don't plan on providing even basic vet care seek out FREE kittens.  Owners who don't alter their pets allow litter after litter giving them away for free to anyone who will take one. Chances are these people won't alter them and the cycle continues. We can easily reduce the neglect, abuse and deaths simply by reducing their numbers so they aren't so easy to obtain.

If it's that simple then why is it not being done? The best answer may be, people are more likely to support the photos of sad faces than they are a spay/neuter program. With a spay/neuter program you don't see the sad faces, and that's exactly the point - no sad faces, no suffering!



In Loving Memory


I remember the call "I have three baby kittens starving and scared under my porch. I can't go near them, what do I do?" These calls are all too frequent. As hungry as they were, these little guys were 'trouble'. It took our volunteers over a week to catch them. Sadly, many organizations will take the kittens leaving mom to have more, we took the extra effort to catch and spay mom as well - ending the cycle. Frannie hissed and spit, fearful of humans for the first few weeks. Slowly she began to purr and loved the attention. The fear washed from her eyes. Being a bit shy with strangers, few potential adopters would give her a second look -  until a few weeks ago when she was finally adopted.   Tragically, the family suffered a home fire, Frannie and two other beloved pets lost their lives. Everyone at AHP is heartbroken - when you care for a pet so long, they feel like one of your own. In addition, we feel it is a cruel twist of fate that Frannie finally went to the most incredible home only to have her life snatched from her. We are forever thankful to her new mom and dad - as in the last few years they were the only ones that truly cared enough to give her a home. Unlike all the other cats now trying to survive on our streets, once kittens like her, who will never ever have a 'real' home. Frannie was blessed with the gift of having a true home. Our hearts and warmest wishes are with this family as they try to recover from such a horrible tragedy.  Furthermore, as they say - out of sght out of mind - many more kittens just like Frannie suffer to survive on our streets. Without intervention, most perish - the few that do survive go on to have more. The cycle of suffering continues. We are collecting donations in Frannie's name to rescue other kittens trying to survive on  the streets. Simply click on the donation button above or mail to : A Helping Paw/ Frannie, Box 387, Buzzards Bay, MA 02532.

 Petfinder Visitors...

Please note that due to recent changes to the Petfinder site we are unable to keep our pages updated. Until these issues are resolved please visit our 'adoptable pet' page directly for all new pet arrivals!


$500 Fine for Dumping Pets at our Door - pets are not GARBAGE, please call to make an appointment to surrender your pet.

Support No-Kill - Support A Helping Paw

Donate Today!   Yes, 100% of your donation helps save a pet's life!

 (Dear donors, your privacy is extremely important to us. A Helping Paw, has never and never will: rent, lease, sell or transfer any of your personal information.)

 Kitty Litter  Desperately needed!

Cat's Pride or Fresh Step clay would be purrfect!

Raise Funds ~ Recycle ~ Re-use ~ Re-invent ~ Re-home precious pets

What do the pets need most???

$$$ Money $$$ Money $$$ Money $$$

No amount is ever too little. With a substantial amount of income lost over the last four months because of the move - we need to all work together, spread the word, and get this onderful no-kill shelter back on its feet -  every penny counts and can be the difference between life or death for so many animals left homeless in this poor economy. These pets need you, it is the best gift you can give: LIFE! 

 These gorgeous animals are so deserving. Please don't turn your back on them.

 Donations can be made thru PayPal, right here on our site or mailed to A Helping Paw, Box 387, Buzzards Bay, MA 02532.  

Community Involvement is What It Is All About!

Working with and for the community to STOP the killing!

Brick Sponsors:

Anonymous ~ Geri Paxton - Long life, Good health, Hapiness & Love ~ Maria - In memory of Rayne ~ Maria - In memory of Henry ~ Malvina - Best wishes from Bosco & Buri ~ Joan McCarthy - In memory of Pumpkin ~ Pony - 3/9/09 ~ Karen King - For Minnie ~ Karen King - For Winslow Farm Animal Sanctuary ~ Sharon Martin - In Memory of: Pepper, Princess, Amanda & Luther ~ Ingeborg - In memory of all my pets ~ Sheila Perry - In memory of our beloved "Mickey" ~

Sad Fate For Our Feline Friends

People are moving abandoning their cats leaving them  to fend for themselves. Many of these cats haven't been altered leading to countless litters now growing up in our neighborhoods. This has lead to an enormous feline epidemic of homelessness - one which is causing all cat shelters to be overwhelmed. To add to the problem, only a small majority of people take cat ownership seriously. It has been estimated that only about 1/3 of cats will remain in their homes for life. These are very sad statistics. Easy to come by for FREE, often times people take in a cat without making a commitment to that cat.   According to our statistics, less than 50% of found or free cats are NOT altered, in fact, many don't receive any vet care at all. These unaltered cats are ultimately leading to the deaths of thousands of cats waiting for homes at shelters accross MA, as they produce litter after litter of kittens.

To make matters worse, few so called cat lovers are truly commited to the cats they keep. Fluffy was adorable and fun as a kitten, but as Fluffy gets older he now goes on the counters, scratches the furniture and eats the houseplants. Fluffy has become an aggravation and quickly dumped at an animal shelter for doing what cats do naturally. A recent call only confirms the lack of respect owners have for heir cats. A woman was frustrated statinghe cat needs to go NOW! It seems the house has gone through many changes over the last few months causing much stress on the cat - the cat now is pooping outside the litter box - a definite sign of stress. Instead of giving the cat sometime and trying to help it through this difficult period, the woman simply wants the cat gone. This cat needs this woman's understanding and patience. When this cat needs her most she simply wants to dump it on someone else.  These stories are much too frequent - when cats begin behaving in a way humans deem innapropriate, we simply abandon them. I guess the word 'commitment' means only while things are going well, when things start going wrong kitty gets thrown out the door right along with any commitment. The most interesting thing is people will tolerate 'bad' behavior from their dogs. We laugh and share stories about our puppies peeing in our shoes or our dog eating our car seats, yet kitty breaks a vase and out he goes. Is it possible people have more respect for dogs because they greet us at the door wagging their tails and they obey our commands while kitties rarely obey us, generally do as they please and most often boss us around? Are we truly a society that feels we need to be the boss? Very sad for people who give up on their cats so easily. Creative parents know that each year our child throws a new phase at us, just when we master the first one things change. We don't throw our hands up with frustration and dump our kids on the neighbor's porch (well, most of us don't anyway) we respect our children and deal with any issues the best we can. Doesn't our cat deserve the same respect? Though cats are deemed domesticated, they have truly retained their wild instincts. Keeping a cat is like having a small version of a tiger in your home. If living with something that will eat your houseplants, scratch your furniture, throw up furballs on your couch,  sleep on your counters or swats at you when you give it a bum rub bothers you - DON'T get a cat!  

For those of you who enjoy living with a 'piece' of the wild, we are now offering Marc Marone's Cat Keeper book free with every adoption. This book helps keep cats in their homes by helping us humans learn why our cats do what they do and how it is our JOB to be creative to reduce any issues so our cat can enjoy a life-long home.

With so many cats left unwanted, we hope you will help us keep cats in their home by sponsoring a book for $10. each. Book sponsorships can be sent o A Helping Paw, Box 387, Buzzards Bay, MA 02532, please note book sponsor on your donation.



 Cick Below To Download Our New Toolbar

Your on-line holiday shopping will raise money for the pets!

 Staples, Kohls, Amazon, Target and hundreds of other shops!


A Helping Paw Important Facts! 

There seems to be some confusion about our organization - and obviously I can understand why: A Helping Paw is truly, one-of-a-kind! We are the only full-service animal society that also runs a thrift shop from the same location. Many people wrongly think we own our building - false, sadly this is our 5th building in 10 yrs. Unlike the majority of the large shelters who do own their buildings, we are at the mercy of a monthly lease. Knowing it is vital  to provide the public and homeless pets with a full-service facility that is open 5 days a week, we obviously need a building - in order to cover the costs (lease, electricty and heat, (by the way we pay a higher commercial rate for all utilities) we sell items donated by pet lovers at our re-sale shop to off-set some of these expenses. What most people forget is that our volunteers are technically running two businesses at the same time - double the work. This is why we ask that anyone wishing to visit with our dogs, must set up an appointment. Many people have asked why they can't just drop in - chances are we'd have at least 6-10 people a day drop in 'just looking', each of these visits would take 10 minutes, that's over an hour per day! I wish we had that much time to spare each day and that the only thing we had to do all day was to visit with people, but until we own our own building, we must run the thrift shop for the extra income. Our entire goal has been to continue to run this organization as a full-service facility - working together daily with the public to improve the lives of animals. So many people call us thanking us for help and assistance, stating that they called many other places and either they were closed or their calls hadn't been returned. We take calls from everywhere! We even recently received a call from California! Needless to say we also have thousands of vistors who simply drop in that we've also assisted. Our goal is still to raise enough money to purchase our own building wich would give us so much more time to do what we love doing most - working with the pets and people - but for now we appreciate and thank all of you for your understanding as we struggle to provide valuable services to the community: shelter and care to countless homeless pets; adoption and matching services that ensures adopters find the right pet for their family; owned pet placement services that allows preapproved pet owners to surrender their pets to a place they can feel secure knowing that will take the extra time and effort to find the right home for their pet;   low-cost spay/neuter certificates to low-income pet owners; FREE cat & dog food through our pet food pantry for those pet owners struggling with bills; rehabilitation services to homeless pets that need just a little extra care and understanding so they can be placed in homes; and as always, education and information to any and all of your pet-related questions, regardless if it's about a homeless pet or even your own personal pet, though we don't have all the answers, we are always happy to try and or find other resources that may help. WOW! Now, that's a busy day! Please thank all of our kind donors for making this all possible.

 Thank you to our new pet parents who have helped us save more lives by adopting a pet from our humane society!

  Click HERE  to see the latest pets saved at A Helping Paw.


 Voted # 9 In Massachusetts!

Supply Donations Needed:
Cat litter: Clay litter (Cat's Pride is best) quality scoop litter  (our kitties give Scoop Away & Fresh Step 5 paws-up!)
Bleach, paper towels, kitchen bags. Gas Cards to Cumberland Farms, Irving etc. Because we do not have a vet on staff, we have to transport every single pet to the vet. This takes a great deal of time and needless to say money. Gas cards in any amount would be such a great help.

Order your gifts here! Books, Cd's, DVDs almost everything! By going through our site, everything you order at helps raise funds for the pets! Click any link below and simply search the item you are looking for.  



Join A Helping Paw at leading this life-saving effort "Pets n' Crisis"

We all know the economy is poor. But did you know it is the direct cause of the deaths of more cats and kittens than usual? As more and more people lose their homes, more cats and kittens are turned in to shelters that are already overfull. To make matters worse, fewer people are adopting. Can you blame them? Everyone is cracking down on their spending and adopting a cat or kitten is the last thing they are thinking about. This surely has become a tragic problem for every shelter. A Helping Paw has the solution - We CAN increase adoptions in this poor economy by reducing adoption fees and making it more affordable to adopt. Problem is, we can't do it unless, you, the public supports this wonderful life-saving effort. Adoption fees only cover medical care. When we do an adoption, that fee goes directly back into medical care to help the next pet. So as you can see we can't lower fees unless we have your financial help because we won't have enough money to provide medical care to another pet. With the public's help and donations, we can reduce the adoption fee of a pet, and still have enough money to help the next pet in need. We've already proved that we can increase adoptions in this extremely poor economy now all we need is generous public support. With your donation of $25 or more we can save many more lives preventing these pets from ending up in already over burdened kill shelters. Every single donation is helping save the life of a precious cat or kitten. Please, please help these precious animals, sponsor an adoption today. You can even choose wich cat or kitten you would like to sponsor, just choose from our adoptable pet list. If you or your business would like to be named as their special sponsor please let us know, otherwise we will assume you would like to remain anonymous. Please make donations out to: A Helping Paw (Cats n' Crisis). Trust me, you will feel great knowing you saved a kitty and made it possible for them to get a great home.



 Volunteers Are TRUE Livesavers ~  Come join us!

Volunteering to help homeless pets is so rewarding! You can see it in their eyes they are content. For many this is the first time they truly feel safe and secure. Come join us and help us help more pets in need. Morning cleaners always needed - come work with the pets in their cage-free rooms, though we warn you, it can be a bit of a challenge at times as we have many super curious pets! Cleaning isn't for you? That's OK, we have plenty of things to keep you busy and help support the pets: we always need: grant writers; re-sale shop pricers and display help; people to hang posters at area shops; people to bring our pets to meet & greets at local pet stores; people who can transport pets to medical appointments and on and on.  Please come in to fill out a volunteer form and tell us more about how you can help pets. Even an hour a week makes all the difference! Reliable people only please. Great way to learn more about what it takes to save these precious pets. College bound students WELCOME!





  Do YOU care enough? Give The Gift Of Life. Don't wait, tomorrow could be too late. A Helping Paw Inc.
Box 387
Buzzards Bay, MA 02532
3086 Unit #4 Cranberry Hwy., E. Wareham
Dedicated to ending the cruelty, suffering and death caused by animal overpopulation. We pride ourselves in helping the ones that need it the most - we DO NOT pull "perfect" pets from other states. Massachusetts shelters are already overburdened and it is our goal to reduce the deaths of wonderful, loving pets, right here in Massachusetts. Our services go far beyond the work we do with the animals, we take great pride in the work we do helping people and the community! After all, it's the pets and people that make the community, and our goal is to make it better for everyone.


Can We Become A NO-KILL State?

Only if we stop using excuses for killing healthy adoptable pets. Shelters & communities working as one can make MA a no-kill state. Just a few ways we can stop the killing:

  • Increased foster homes
  • Additional funding for spay/neuter programs
  • Reduced cost adoption fees for 'harder' to place pets
  • Increased public awareness
  • Remodeling 'cat' limit laws that prevent great pet owners from adopting. (did you know some towns have a 2 cat limit? You can have 10 children, but only two cats?)


Pet Of The Month
I want to give you my love!  

Can you imagine I have been at the shelter for over a year? I came in as a baby and I've grown up here. I was rescued from a life on the streets and though I've made this my home and feel relaxed here, I tend to become nervous again in new places. I need someone who will understand that it will take me a while to adjust in my new home. I'll probably hide under the sofa for a week or two, but with your love and patience I will become a loyal friend. I want attention and love, but with so many new people coming and going it is hard for me to trust. Consider adopting one of my 'special' friends like me, for a great adoption deal.

When getting a new pet, what is most important to you?
 pet is current on vaccines and altered
 pet is micro chipped
 pet must be young
 I only want a pet in good health


When YOU don't SPAY it's the pets that pay...

Everyone thinks working at a shelter must be so much fun. It is one of the most emotionally and physically draining jobs one could do and with very little respect from the public.

The frustration of watching pets suffer simply because their caregivers didn't care enough  to have their pets altered is horrific. People think "what's the big deal, people love kittens, I'll find homes for all mine." Put aside the fact that there are already thousands of kittens being killed each year in shelters because of lack of good homes.  Consider the suffering these animals go through. All too often we take in a litter of kittens who are born to moms who aren't even healthy enough to care for themselves. Many times we take in a mom and babies the owner stating they can't keep the cat because she simply won't stop getting pregnant. They laugh that she's on her forth litter of the year. Mom's resources are completely drained, her body never been given time to recover, and now she's expected to care for yet another litter. Mom is in poor condition and we have to boost her the best we can just so she will survive in hopes she will be strong enough to care for her babies. Many times mom's body is in such a weak state, the kittens begin to suffer. Though we intervene the best we can, these kittens are already in a frail state. Our volunteers spend hour after hour,  day after day trying to keep the kittens going long enough for their bodies to respond to the nutrition we are offering them. Many times, just when we think they are going to make it, the kittens take a turn for the worst. Their little bodies finally unable to fight anymore. We watch as they take their last breath and their suffering ends. Sick to our stomachs that no matter how hard we worked it wasn't enough. Remembering the owner who laughed and showed absolutely no respect for the pet they took in. Yes, the pets PAY when you don't spay.

 Medical Funds Needed For Senior Dogs

AHP is one of the only organizations that rescues senior dogs.
Without your donations how can we help them?  
Senior dogs require more than just basic medical care, caring for these precious seniors can be financially draining for our shelter. Adoption fees only cover a small portion of their care.  By making a donation towards their care, you are making it possible for us to help yet another dog in need.
A tiny little guy trying to survive the streets alone. With his poor health it is amazing he survived. No other shelter would help him because of the cost of his medical care. We took him in keeping our fingers crossed there are enough people out there that want to see this little guy live. Thank you to the two people who cared enough to send in a combined total of $150.
"Adison's Story"
Adison was owned by a woman who kept to herself, never asking anyone for help. She rarely left her home, and almost never had visitors. She passed away queitly, and wasn't found for 10 days. Poor Adison didn't know how to cry out for help. He survived on a bag of cat food and what water he found. We were contacted by a family member shortly after the dreaded call. But before the family had a chance to rescue Adison, the police had taken him away and sent him to another shelter.  He was to be placed in a 10 day quarantine, but because his owner was deceased, he was going to be immediately euthanized due to his poor condition. So not only did this poor dog just lose his home, and his  beloved owner, he was soon to lose his life. After several calls, just short from his euthanization,  the family was able to get him released and he was then brought to us. The family warned us that he was in poor condition so we were prepared for the worst. But even at that, the volunteer was still shocked by his appearance. He was 100% matted.  His feet had balls of matts the size of golf balls. At first we thought he had no eyes, until we pryed the fur away. It was hard to tell if he had any physical issues, so the first trip he would make was to the groomer. The groomer had her work cut out for her. It took four hours, two people and several blades to find the little doggie under that mess. Our volunteer came back looking like she was just dragged through the streets. Though Adison came back with a few knicks and bruises, I can guarantee he felt 100% better. It took just a few short days for him to recover from his ordeal of losing his home and mom and for the first time he wagged his tail. Though he can be a cantancaras old man at times, most times he just wants to get a good o'l bum rub and play outside.
A very special thank you to the family member who cared enough to rescue Adison. Most people wouldn't have bothered to go to the effort of rescuing him, especially during such an emotionally draining time. Generally when a family member passes away, the pets are euthanized because no one in the family cares enough to take them in. But she put aside her pain, to save his life and offer one last gift to her loved one.
We would also like to thank Marleen Malone, owner  of The Rover Makeover in Sagamore for donating her services to make this little boy look so handsome.
 Though we deal with real cases of animal abuse and neglect on a daily basis, Adison's story isn't about that. It's about a woman who removed herself so much from society that for whatever reason, she was unable to ask for help for herself. I hope she is looking down at us with a smile, knowing that yes a few people did care, they cared enough to want her beloved dog to have a second chance at life.  

Barnstable County
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 FREE Pets

Every wonder what happened to the 6 kittens you gave away FREE...

  1. was hit by a car
  2. was euthanized at a shelter along with over 80% of all cats at shelters
  3. was eaten by a coyote
  4. died of medical problems because the owner was too cheap to take it to a vet
  5. was killed by the neighbor's dog
  6. is still living with a loving family.

Less than 25% of the cats and or kittens given away free wind up in permanent homes. Over 90% of the cats and kittens we take in were obtained for free by a friend, family member or through the newspaper. Don't let your cat litter, spay today!

 Building Fund
The Pets Need You - See Their Video-   - The Lives We Save....

click here for updates

  • We have given out over $30,000 in spay/neuter assistance
  • We have made it affordable for low-income pet owners to alter their pets
  • We have offered free spay/neuter to people who care for ferals
  • We provide many area classrooms with the award winning publication Kind News
  • We have rescued hundreds of stray cats and kittens from our streets
  • We have drastically reduced the feral population in our area
  • We have prevented thousands of kittens from being born to our streets
  • We offer daily support to pet owners who have questions about their pets
  • We have provided a resource for people unable to keep their pets
  • We have given out hundreds of pounds of free pet food to less fortunate pet owners

Thank you volunteers and financial donors for all that you have done to improve the lives of animals and the people who love them.


Foster Parents NEEDED! 
I remember a time when the volunteers and I would get a much needed break in the winter. Well, those days are long gone. These gorgeous animals in need are keeping us hopping all year round. So many in need, so little room. We want to be prepared for the hectic spring season so we are currently setting up foster homes in preperation. If you would like to help save a pet's life by becoming a foster parent, please call today. Certain requirements are necessary to ensure the health of your pets and ours, such as providing a private room in your home. All we ask is that you are reliable, dedicated and able to offer lots of love and patience. And you can't beat the reward of helping a homeless pet get a new, permanent  family. Please call today or email

 Volunteers are unpaid, not because they are worthless, but because they are priceless.  Anonymous

Pet Shopping - Read Before You Search
Gone are the days when people would walk into a shelter and simply fall in love with a pet. Times have changed making  it possible for people to view lots of different animals in a shorter period of time, right from their own home. We are forever grateful to the site who has helped placed so many of our pets, however, I feel, as do several of the other shelters I've spoken with, that sites such as these have lead to 'pet browsing', meaning people are now being very specific when looking for a pet. No longer do people jump in their car and visit the nearest shelter in hopes of finding a match. People now scan through unlimited photos and descriptions of pets, in search of what they consider to be the 'perfect' pet.  Being specific as far as personality goes is obviously crucial to matching a pet to your family, but some people have taken it to the point of specific size, colors, shade of colors, hair length, even eye color! etc as if looking for a new dress that will fit perfectly. Whatever happened to adopting a pet because it made you feel great knowing you saved a life that needed saving? Recently we had a couple who stopped by and looked at five other shelters for a kitten, they had seen near over 30 kittens yet still couldn't find one that 'clicked' with them. Our precious Princess dog was overlooked because she wasn't the right color, our little 14 pound doggie friend had five vistors yell at me because they said he was MUCH too big! our sister sibling kittens are much too big for most at only six months of age, (sadly this pair has spent their entire six months at the shelter, but no one seems to care, so they will continue to grow up in a cage.) even a kitten at three months is considered too big!  
Though we are thankful to have the opportunity to list our pets on-line reaching many more potential adopters. We are finding on-line adoption sites have lead to people becoming far too 'picky' when choosing a pet.   Prior to internet searching, people would visit their local shelter and choose from the pets available. People were more apt to adopt a pet with mild special requirements, simply because they interacted with the pet and fell in love. Even when finding out the pet had special needs, they were less concerned and more likely to continue with adoption because they had already become attached.  Now with internet searching, people simply by pass any pet that has even mild special requirements.
  A Helping Paw feels every life is valuable and we would never turn our backs on the ones that need us the most. But sadly when people are searching for a pet, it is way too easy to click them away and on to the next pet. Had they met the pet at our shelter, chances are they would have fallen in love with them regardless of any issues they may have.  
We are finding far less people are concerned about the pet's personality, they are too busy searching for the right color, length of fur or even eye color.  In their quest to find the 'perfect; pet, they are overlooking some of the most amazing animals.  I have to wonder sometimes if society is forcing shelters to deal with only prime animals, the heck with the ones who may be a little shy or simply need a little eye ointment now and again.
Over the last five years a drastic change has been made in dog adoptions. People now virtually 'special order' their pooches, again in previous times people would visit shelters looking for their match. Chances are they went home with something totally different than what they thought they were looking for simply because they fell in love. Now you simply leave your pet description with an organization and they will ship you almost anything you want from a southern state. Considering most people only want puppies or sm breed dogs, what happens to all the other wonderful dogs right here in MA who so desperately want a home? Did you know that being either a big or black dog is almost an immediate death sentence?
I see a very sad change coming, kittens just over the three month mark stuck in cages day after day unable to play or explore as people continue their quest to find the 'youngest' kitten possible. Soon these kittens will be euthanized at tradtional shelters as they have overstayed their welcome. Cats who tend to be a bit shy around new people (gosh how can we blame them, pop me in a new place surrounded by strangers and see how I react), will never get a home, dogs who are just a little oversized for the likes of most people, or possibly even the wrong color will be put to death.
I guess as in any business you must role with the changes in order to succeed, as so many shelters have already learned, but if that means leaving the old, the black, the 'too' big kittens, the shy, the ones who require simple medical care to die, we will NEVER make that change! That is not a change I want to be part of. I started rescue work to rescue pets, not supply the demands of people who judge pets by color, size, shape or first impressions. Good things never come easy and that inculdes relationships, that is what we want from our adopters, not a trophy to show their  friends, but a true relationship with the pet they choose to adopt. If we chose our spouses simply based on looks and whether or not they had medical issues, few of us would be happily married. Of course I got lucky, I just happened to get looks and a great personality!
We can't shop for pets the same as we do inanimate objects such as clothes or cars, we only get pleasure from these things based on their looks, pets bring us pleasure  through their individual personalities, looks should not be a factor.  
Written By Chrissy T.  in hopes more people will adopt with their eyes closed.


 Special Needs Kittens Desperately Need Your Help
~~ Star Princess Fund ~~
Star Princess is a precious little girl who was found trying to survive alone on the streets with a seriously deformed leg. Just one week later an adorable 6 week old kitten was found crying in pain. With his paw trapped in a fence, he painfully set him self free, tearing off all the skin from his paw. Alone in fear and pain, maggots soon infected the skinless paw. He was named Survivor.   Emergency care was put on hold as volunteers tried to come up with the money needed to save his life. Sadly, Survivor didn't make it. We care so much for these precious animals who have been abandoned, abused and neglected. It brings tears to our eyes when we lack the funds to help them. They look at you to ease their pain, give them a chance at life.  Please won't you make a generous donation to our "Star Princess" medical fund to ease the pain and suffering of others who require emergency care.
Animal Population Out of Control
In every town there are hundreds to thousands of pets calling the streets their home. In one area alone we rescued  200 kitties.  Many  were kittens.  The victims are Innocent: being tossed out by caregivers who've grown tired of them, or didn't want to provide medical care, or moved away. Many are the product of free-roaming unaltered pets breeding litter after litter. Doesn't matter where they came from or how they got there, the fact is they need our help. 
 Most people could care less about stray cats, feeling they aren't worthy of safety, security and love. Shame on you people, just one visit at our sanctuary seeing how happy and content our feral kitties are would change your mind. So many people think it's sad to see these kitties living on the streets, but so few people offer the financial resources we need to help these wonderful kitties. People also wrongly assume if a pet was abandoned it must be sick or have something wrong with it. 99% of the time there wasn't anything wrong with the pet, it was the owner that had issues, commitment and moral issues.  
         I don't know of one town that isn't 'littered' with groups of stray/abandoned/feral cats and kittens. Most people don't see them so they don't think there is a problem. Just because you don't see the problem doesn't mean it doesn't exists. Many people who are aware of the problem, they've seen litters of kittens growing up on their street, feel it's the town's responsibility.
Every town is facing cut-backs. Whether we agree with them or not, the fact is many necessary programs are suffering. Resources to help homeless animals are seriously lacking and in many towns there are no town run resources for cats and kittens, at all! This is no longer a town problem, this is everyone's problem. Until we start taking responsibility for these precious beings ourselves, nothing will change - cats and kittens will continue to die on the streets. Please don't rely on animal shelters to do it alone - the problem is just too overwhelming! But each and every person can make a drastic difference. Each person who volunteers or offers financial assistance can help towards curing the problem. Considering a group of 30 cats can lead to over 200 cats+ in just one season, it makes perfect sense to spay/neuter these cats and end the vicious cycle. Unlike the tragedy of Katrina that no one could have prevented, this is something we can all do something about. Imagine a time when gorgeous little fluff balls with blue eyes can be placed in loving homes instead of being eaten by coyotes, or hit by cars, or dying from disease. You, you reading this can make the difference. Your tax money goes to destroying animals, why not send a donation to help save them. Whether it's $1, $50, or $1,000 - every penny counts! Your time, your money can be what saves that precious little blue-eyed baby - it's a gift from the heart that will give you a warm feeling forever.


A Helping Paw is a  no-kill, volunteer run organization dedicated to increasing the human/animal bond and decreasing the deaths of innocent homeless animals. According to the HSUS over 70% of cats & kittens in shelters are destroyed and 60% of dogs. A Helping Paw is a NO-KILL organization. Though we are unable to take in EVERY pet due to space and lack of funding, EVERY pet we take in gets a second chance at life. Our efforts directly benefit open admission shelters by lessening the amount of animals at these facilities.   Through the efforts of our dedicated volunteers and with financial support of animal lovers like you, we have saved hundreds and hundreds of animals from suffering a cruel death. Many of the pets we take in would normally be euthanized by other shelters due to medical costs and lack of space -  if a pet has any problems, regardless of how mild,  people won't adopt them. We don't think a pet should be killed just because it has a simple medical problem or is a bit nervous around strangers. Every pet we take in will remain with us either permanently or until we can find it a great new loving home. Please help us continue saving these wonderful animals either by adopting a 'special' pet, or sending a financial donation to help us care for one.   Humans aren't perfect, why should we expect our pets to be.  AHP is funded exclusively by people like you who want to stop the killing of innocent lives. We DO NOT get one penny  from the government nor town contracts. Every penny we get is stretched so we can help as many animals as possible. Our "Angel Wings" program appeared in the ASPCA's 101 great shelter ideas, and we are proud members of the HSUS and the Very Best PetNetwork, We've also had mention in many local papers and national coverage in Cat Fancy Magazine.
We are honoured to accept this award on behalf of our dedicated volunteers and friends
who offer financial support. Please visit these wonderful sites, they are amazing!
Don't forget to visit our rescue page to see all the great animals that our volunteers and supporters have saved: click here

Beanie Babies For Pets
 Our goal is to collect over 5000 Beanie Babies, help us reach our goal! For more info please call . All sales will go directly into our building fund.
Item Donations:

We welcome most items for our thrift shop, but please keep in mind due to limited space we request that all items have a value of $5. or more. The more value an item has the more money we can raise for the pets.

Not Accepted

Matresses, computers and monitors must be 2008 or newer, no black & white TV's, all electronics must look new and be working perfectly, no medical supplies such as walkers, crutches etc., no golf clubs, no baby items, no toys unless like new and complete.

Items should be dropped off during open hours. Please do NOT leave items outside. They will be stolen.



Wareham Wal-Mart $500.

Home Depot Wareham $25 gift card

Shaws Wareham - $50 gift card


Wal-mart Raynham - $500.

Sept- Dec - Over $12,500 for our building fund.

Sept. $300. from the Cape for our building fund.

Aug. $600. from a special friend for medical care

A special THANK YOU to Tessa & Jill. Mom donated all of her earnings from her yard sale to our pets. And little Tessa at only 2 1/2 years old, donated all of her change which totaled $50. Our pets are very lucky to have such special friends.

Thank you to for helping promote our thrift shop.   

Looking for a thrift store in your area? Visit them today!  

Special thanks to our media friends:

Wareham Courier - has helped us place 100's of pets!


Cool 102

The Pet Gazette

Wareham Weekly

The Pet Zone

Brockton Enterprise

Bourne Enterprise

Supporting Vets

Their efforts make it possible to save more lives

Mattapoisett Animal Hospital:

Animal Health Clinic - Trowbridge Rd, Bourne -

Marion Animal Hospital Marion

Pet Partners -

Dr Palmer, NH

  We would like to thank Lynn and Jack Peterson for all their help.  Please tune into their pet show every Friday on WBSM, 1420 AM. MY TURN Career Opportunities students  of Bourne High School held a special fundraiser just for our pets. They raised $155.00! A+++ The funds will help our pets get the medical care they need. We would like to thank the following publications for running articles in hopes of helping us find a new home: The Bourne Enterprise, Cape Cod Times and the Standard Times.
May 2005 - A very special "paws-up" to the kind gentleman who donated a 10' x 20' outdoor dog run for our K-9 residents.
Dec 2005 - $1,000 to our feline friends from Ms. Rogak
Dec 2005 - $2,000 from a friend to help with feral kitties

A person who can see into an animal's life...sees beyond themselves. CT

A Helping Paw is a registered 501 (c) (3) all volunteer nonprofit organization. Your donation is fully tax deductible. We do NOT pay our Directors, so more of your donation goes directly to the pets.  We make your hard earned funds work hard for the pets.
Keep those Paw Points Coming!  
since May 10, 2005
Copyright A Helping Paw 1998-2014