We started with little fanfare and even fewer resources: creating a sanctuary for homeless and special-needs animals literally from the ground up, forging roadways and erecting buildings with our bare hands. We were creating a better world through kindness to animals.
We did it with passion, believing that a humane path forward — one in which every pet has the chance to know love and companionship — was the only path forward.
There was no how-to manual for realizing such a vision, but we soon found we didn’t need one. We emphasized positive change and what we could accomplish together, never guilt or shock to force people into joining us.
Even in those early days, each discrete act of lifesaving counted, no matter how small or unseen. Because we weren’t just building a sanctuary. We were laying the groundwork for changing how this country looks at — and looks out for — its homeless dogs and cats. What began as a few makeshift structures in the middle of nowhere grew into a movement — to bring about a time when there are no more homeless pets — shaping the way we care for our most beloved companions. Even when money was tight, we shared whatever we had — and the more we shared, the more we were given to share.
Today, the Sanctuary remains our anchor, and as we’ve grown, our national network partners and pet lifesaving
Back in 1984, a scrappy group of friends from far corners of the globe settled in a remote area of Utah’s high desert … and took the first steps to forever changing the future for pets in shelters.
It’s the story of Best Friends, but it’s much more than the history of a spot on the map. This group of ordinary but passionate people believed that every pet has a story, too, each one worth saving, each life individual and important. Today, nearly four decades after they broke ground for a sanctuary in a remote region of the Southwest, achieving no-kill across the entire country is within reach.