Who are Pawz for Thought?

Pawz for Thought is an animal charity based in Sunderland but operating throughout the North East of England. We were formed 21 years ago in 2003, as a positive hands on response to the distressingly high number of animal welfare issues in the region from those small beginnings we have steadily grown into a very busy and vibrant organisation. We have grown to the point where we successfully handle hundreds of animals each year. The Charity has no paid staff and everything we achieve is through the hard work of our volunteers and supporters who give willing of their time and money.

Animals are never cheap and to meet our annual running costs we have a continual fundraising programme. Our Charity shop in Fulwell Road, Sunderland, is the major contributor. We always appreciate donations of saleable goods and if you are a team player and could spare a few hours each week to help in the shop please contact us. 

We always take stalls at the major events e.g. Sunderland Air Show but we also attend many of the smaller community fairs and shows. Increasingly our supporters are taking part in the major sporting events in the region or setting their own challenge and collecting sponsorship.

Sadly we cannot not help every animal or owner but each year we are finding more and more permanent new homes for companion animals. The majority of these are cats, kittens, dogs and rabbits although we also rehome guinea pigs, rats, gerbils and many others. However, not being a cat and dog shelter we are limited in the number of animals we can take into our care at any one time as most of our animals are cared for in foster homes while awaiting a new home.

When re-homing we operate an exhaustive vetting process always seeking to place the right animal with the right owner. Anybody looking to adopt from us should expect a home visit and vet check. We operate a very strong neutering policy and all our animals are micro-chipped, neutered and vaccinated, where appropriate, before they leave us. If we take on the task of re-homing an animal it remains our responsibility for life and the adoptive owners sign a contract to this effect asking them to contact us if their circumstances change.

Although we will not re-home to those under 18 years of age an elderly person's age is not necessarily a negative as we have a system which will allow older people to adopt in the confidence that their pets will be cared for in an emergency.

Most of our work is with companion animals but we have a few volunteers who are particularly interested in wildlife. However, we are very restricted by space limiting the number of wild birds and animals we can handle at any one time but will help where we can. Wild animals must be returned to the wild as quickly as possible and in most cases we can succeed in this ourselves. With some more difficult species we will give immediate first aid and stabilise them, they are then passed on to specialist centres. Please remember young birds are best reared by mother birds!