PAWS Across America

PAWS Across America is a national animal transport program that AWS began in 2002. Through the program, we receive adoptable companion animals from other shelters and rescue groups in need of help placing their animals.

Due to pet overpopulation, many shelters — particularly in mid-western and southern states — are faced with euthanizing healthy and highly adoptable animals. To prevent this devastating outcome, pAWS Across America program works to transport animals from high-supply/low-demand areas to AWS, where we can find them a loving home.

This program only operates on the basis of space availability, and local animals are always our priority. When space is available, we are proud to extend our services and care to animals throughout Maine, New England and beyond. AWS occasionally transports animals to other rescue groups and shelters to facilitate their adoption.

To date, more than 6,000 dogs, cats and other small animals have found new homes through our transport program.

AWS is also an emergency placement partner for both the ASPCA and Humane Society of the United States. These national organizations rely on placement partners to provide shelter and adoption services for animals displaced by natural disasters.

Spaying and neutering is the long-term solution to the overpopulation crisis, and our sending shelters all have plans and programs in place to address this major problem in their communities. AWS adheres to the state of Maine’s strict importation requirements, including its vaccination protocol and quarantine period, and we spay or neuter all animals before they go home.