|Founded||June 21, 1968|
|Founders||Francis Battista, Judah Battista, Silva Battista, Gregory Castle, Gabriel Depeyer, Jana Depeyer|
|Legal status||"501(c)(3) "nonprofit organization|
|Focus||"Animal welfare, "animal rights|
|Origins||Foundation Faith of the Millennium;
Process Church of the Final Judgment
|Marc A. Peralta|
|"Subsidiaries||Best Friends Productions LLC,
1089 Wykoff LLC,
307 West Broadway LLC,
Amber Housing LLC, Best Friends Wellness Center Inc
|Best Friends Animal Sanctuary|
Best Friends Animal Society, founded in its present form in 1991, is an American "nonprofit "501(c)(3) animal welfare organization. Best Friends Animal Society works nationwide in outreach programs with shelters, rescue groups and members to promote pet adoption, no-kill animal rescue, and spay-and-neuter practices.
The Foundation church relocated animals from its Arizona ranch to property in "Kanab, Utah, in 1984. In 1991, the church was renamed Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, which became a tax-exempt, nonprofit charity, and in 2003 renamed Best Friends Animal Society.
After the Foundation church moved to the current grounds in 1984, the founders eventually began informally calling it "Best Friends" until 1991 when it began formally operating as Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, a "no-kill shelter located in Southwestern "Utah in Angel Canyon (formerly Kanab Canyon) near "Kanab.
The sanctuary is on 3,700 acres (15 km2) with an additional 33,000 acres (130 km2) leased from the United States "Bureau of Land Management near "Zion National Park, the Grand Canyon's "North Rim, "Bryce Canyon National Park, and "Lake Powell. The sanctuary is home to around 1,500 homeless animals.
In August 2011, the "city of Los Angeles contracted Best Friends to operate and manage its Northeast Valley Shelter, which the city could no longer afford to run. Under the contract, Best Friends was to provide adoptions for shelter animals and spay and neuter services for the community.
The group publishes Best Friends, a bimonthly magazine about animals, animal welfare, news events, and activities at the sanctuary. The magazine, which is distributed free to members, has 200,000 subscribers. Originating as Foundation magazine in 1975, the first edition of Best Friends magazine was published in 1993, two years after the religious group became an animal sanctuary.
Best Friends’ teams entered the hurricane disaster area on September 2, 2005, and stayed eight months in and around New Orleans. Best Friends did not have a significant presence doing animal disaster rescue or recovery work until Katrina.
Also after Katrina, Best Friends helped Pets Alive, an animal shelter in New York state, rescuing around 800 cats from an institutional hoarding situation in Nevada. Best Friends also assisted local animal rescue groups following the "Peruvian earthquakes of 2007.
In 2007, Best Friends took in 22 of 47 former "NFL quarterback "Michael Vick's fighting dogs after petitioning the state of Virginia to save the dogs seized from the "Bad Newz Kennels dog fighting investigation. The dogs, once owned by "NFL Quarterback "Michael Vick, were expected to be euthanized for fear of aggressive behavior. Seven shelters took in the remaining 25 dogs. The court ordered Vick to pay $928,073 in restitution for the “past, present and long-term care of all the dogs.” The court allocated $5,000 for dogs deemed likely to be adopted, and $18,275 for each of the dogs that went into longer-term or lifetime sanctuary care at Best Friends.
The ensuing story of rehabilitation was profiled in an episode of the "National Geographic Channel program "DogTown. Dogtown’s producer, Darcy Dennett, later approached Best Friends about a feature-length documentary on the same story. Released in October 2015, ‘’The Champions’’ covers the stories of five of the dogs in detail, and the impact the dogs have had not just on the people who adopted them, but also on the way society looks at dogs rescued from fighting cases, and the "pit bull breed especially. The film received the 2015 Zelda Penzel "Giving Voice to the Voiceless" award at the 2015 "Hamptons International Film Festival.
"FilmRise acquired the rights to the film in November 2015. The Champions was released theatrically through a series of community screenings and became available for digital download on March 1, 2016.
In August 2008, Best Friends and "PetSmart Charities funded a program called "Feral Freedom" for free-roaming community cats in "Jacksonville, Florida. The program was conceived by Rick Ducharme of First Coast No More Homeless Pets.
Similar programs were funded with a grant from PetSmart Charities and implemented by Best Friends in "Albuquerque, New Mexico; "DeKalb County, Georgia; "San Antonio, Texas; "Baltimore, "Maryland; "Philadelphia, "Pennsylvania; and other communities. In "St. George, Utah, the city partnered with Best Friends on a trap-neuter-return program in January 2013.