Help Animals Find Furever Homes with the Doris Day Animal Foundation

Doris Day was an animal lover and performer known as The Dog Catcher of Beverly Hills.

But who would have thought that an individual like her could make a huge difference in fighting for animal welfare and ending pet homelessness?

She founded the Doris Day Animal Foundation to fund spay and neuter programs, veterinary scholarships, and the rehabilitation of homeless animals. 

Learn more about Doris Day Animal Foundation, how they started, and what you can do to help this animal advocacy organization. 

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Doris Day Animal Foundation charity

Who are the Doris Day Animal Foundation?

The Doris Day Animal Foundation (DDAF) is a national, non-profit 501(c)(3) Public Charity that helps people and animals alike. 

This animal advocacy group’s headquarters is based in Washington, D.C., and began in 1978 as the Doris Day Pet Foundation.

The organization focuses on finding homes for animals, providing medical care, and initiating adoption programs. 

DDAF is also now a leading grant-giving organization, funding other nonprofit 501(c)(3) causes across the country that share its mission of helping animals and those who love them.  

Some of the legacy projects of the Doris Day Animal Foundation include:

  • The Doris Day Equine Center
  • The Duffy Day Life Saving Program
  • The Doris Day/Terry Melcher Scholarships at UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine and Iowa State School of Veterinary Medicine. 

How Did Doris Day Animal Foundation Start?

The Doris Day Animal Foundation was founded in 1978 by legendary performer Doris Day. She recognized the need to support the animal welfare community. 

The organization first focused on finding homes for homeless and abandoned animals. She personally rescued hundreds of animals and fostered them in her own home.

Later, she leased kennel space, provided veterinary care, and founded an adoption program to provide more space for homeless pets. 

Doris knew that personal efforts weren’t enough. She wanted to address the root cause of animal homelessness and overpopulation by forming the Doris Day Animal League in 1987, a national non-profit citizens’ lobbying organization.

It aims to produce legislative initiatives, education, and programs to develop and enforce statutes and regulations protecting animals.

DDAF also founded World Spay Day, reaching global proportions and spaying and neutering millions of animals since its inception. 

What Does the Doris Day Animal Foundation Do?

Doris Day Animal Foundation is known for spearheading World Spay Day in 1994, when the estimated euthanasia rate in overcrowded shelters was between 14 and 17 million dogs and cats. 

The foundation has been consistent in funding several spay and neuter programs all over the country. In fact, between 2008 and 2018, DDAF granted $760,000 to spay or neuter animals in need.

This program has allowed event organizers in 39 states and the District of Columbia to spay/neuter 14,873 cats, dogs, and rabbits.

Some recent grantees of Doris Day Animal Foundation include The Pet Fund, Iowa Parrot Rescue, Equamore Foundation, and the Doris Day Equine Center. 

Grantees are the people, or foundations that the DDAF helps. The grantees receive a grant from the DDAF to help their organization continue their good work.

It also offers scholarships at the University of California at Davis School of Veterinary Medicine to students that want to enroll in the program and help disadvantaged pet populations. 

The veterinary students will learn how to boost the quality of life of animals in shelters through preventive medicine and disease management. 

How Can You Help Doris Day Animal Foundation?


You can make a one-time or monthly donation of any amount to the Doris Day Animal Foundation to support the organization in all its current efforts. 

The organization also allows you to dedicate the gift in honor or memory of the dedicatee’s name. 

Check out DDAF’s online donation page to give your pledge now.

Planned Giving

Perhaps you can leave your assets to DDAF so they will be put to good use. You can make a difference by including a simple clause in your will expressing your desire to contribute.

Learn more about Planned Giving on DDAF’s page.

Partnership Programs

You can also help the foundation continue providing food, shelter, and care for many animal populations across the U.S. through partnership programs. Here are some ways to help: 

  • Use when you search the internet.
  • Use when you shop online.
  • Shop online using Doris Day Animal Foundation at
  • Register at Shop for Your Cause
  • Sign up to eScrip and select the Doris Day Animal Foundation as your cause.
  • Register your reward card at Ralphs, select the Doris Day Animal Foundation and a percentage of your total purchase will be donated to the DDAF.
  • Shop at AmazonSmile and select the Doris Day Animal Foundation as your cause – a portion of your purchase total will be donated to the foundation.
  • Donate your Hilton Honors Hotel Points to DDAF through PointWorthy.
  • Donate through eBay for Charity.

Spread the Word

Follow Doris Day Animal Foundation on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter  to stay updated on their current efforts and events. 

You can also share their initiatives with your followers as a quick and easy way of supporting them. 

Help Doris Day Foundation become more involved in legislative efforts and other initiatives by donating and spreading their mission across your community of animal lovers. 

Be sure to follow our Animal Charity Spotlight section for more great organizations like this.