Yellowstone Valley Animal Shelter believes in being transparent and is committed to sharing statistics and data to help you track our performance and the impact we are having on the lives of animals in our local community.
YVAS helps thousands of dogs, cats, and other companion animals in need find loving homes each year. In 2023, we placed more than 95 percent of the animals entrusted to our care. Together we helped 2,445 animals find new homes and served thousands of Yellowstone County families through free and affordable programs for people and pets.
The success of YVAS’ shelter program is reflected in three key measures: the total number of animals admitted for rehoming, the percentage of animals with live placements (save rate), and the average length of stay in the shelter. YVAS continues to achieve strong results across all three metrics.
We measure our success, in part, through the “save rate,” which is based on all the companion animals we receive, regardless of their age, temperament, or physical condition. The save rate, or live-release rate, is defined as the percentage of animals leaving a shelter alive no matter what their health or behavior status. This could be through adoption, return-to-owner, or transfer. At the end of 2023, YVAS had a save rate of 95%. Thanks to YVAS’s innovative programs and compassionate community, our live-release rate continues to improve each year.
It is our honor to help find new, safe homes for pets in our community. We are frequently asked if YVAS is a “kill shelter” or if an animal brought to us is at risk of being euthanized. YVAS is committed to taking in every animal in need. Unfortunately, some animals come to us with severe or untreatable illnesses or behavior issues that prevent us from placing them in the community. If we cannot help an animal become healthy or if it is not suitable for placement, humane euthanasia is the most compassionate alternative. At all costs, YVAS avoids euthanizing healthy animals. Click here to read more about YVAS’s save rate and stance on euthanasia.
The YVAS foster program is a network of families who are dedicated to providing temporary care to shelter animals in their own homes. The animals that are sent out to foster are all compromised in some way and are not yet considered “adoptable” whether they are underage or underweight, nursing, semi-feral, and need individualized socialization, or recovering from an illness or medical procedure. Foster families provide care and attention to these animals until they are ready to come back to the shelter and find their forever homes.
Yellowstone Valley Animal Shelter is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization serving the city of Billings and the surrounding areas. We heavily rely on the generosity of individuals, foundations, and corporations to provide quality programs and services to the community. We thank you for trusting us with your donations, which directly support programs and services to help animals in need. We welcome you to dive further into our current Annual Report and/or our most recent IRS Form 990 to see how we are putting your donations to good work.