Meet the woman who made history for animals


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March 1, 2024

Meet the woman who made history for animals

Celebrating Women and Animal Advocacy During Women’s History Month

Do you know that AAVS was founded by a woman? Caroline Earle White established AAVS in 1883 to prevent Philadelphia doctors from using stray and stolen dogs in their horrific experiments. We’re so proud of her work and the humble beginnings of our history that we want to honor her, and since March is Women’s History Month, there’s no better time to do it!

Mrs. White and a group of dedicated women established America’s first animal shelter, where homeless dogs and cats were safe from cruelty and could be adopted into loving homes. Experimenters demanded that dogs from the shelter be given to them for use in their laboratories. But despite their intimidation, their demands were always denied. Mrs. White knew the horrible fate that awaited dogs who were used in experiments and believed that a separate organization, dedicated solely to ending the use of animals in research, was needed in order to focus on the problem. And so began the American Anti-Vivisection Society.

Dedicating most of her life to the protection of animals, as well as other important social issues of the time, Mrs. White was a pioneer in the animal rights movement. Everyone at AAVS is proud to continue her legacy of advocating for animals, and we hope you are, too!

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