IFAW believes that communities benefit from balanced, healthy and happy dog and cat populations.
To help foster this, IFAW’s Companion Animals programme conducts work based on a set of principles we call Adequate Guardianship.
Adequate Guardianship maintains that every dog and cat should get enough food, water and basic veterinary care. Equally, every animal should have access to shelter, exercise and companionship. All of this will enable the dogs and cats to maintain their health and well-being.
This may not seem revolutionary in animal welfare, but addressing this together and making certain an individual or entity is responsible for each animal is a huge step forward.
These principles can help improve the lives of cats and dogs, individuals and communities. Even the often ignored stray dogs are usually ‘owned’ by the municipality and can receive adequate guardianship so long as there is an individual or group of individuals to provide the dog with the basic necessities.
Adequate Guardianship in Action
By making Adequate Guardianship the standard by which our Companion Animal Programme works, we can provide valuable support to animals in the communities where we work. This includes: