Rescue Services

The Animal Rescue League of Boston (ARL) is the only animal welfare agency in Massachusetts that has an entire department dedicated to animal rescue.

ARL’s Rescue Service team provides emergency assistance to domesticated pets, livestock, and wildlife that have become trapped, displaced, or otherwise distressed. In 2016, we assisted over 2,200 animals, their families, and their communities.

Follow us on Twitter to see ARL’s latest animal rescues.

Although we work closely with the state, as well as many cities and towns, ARL does not receive any government or public funding and relies solely on the support of compassionate individuals like you.

Donate now to help us continue our important work to serve animals and communities in need!

Rescue Services Hotline

See an animal in distress? Call (617) 426-9170 then press “1″ for Rescue Services.

Rescue Services’ hours of operation are Monday – Saturday, 9:30AM – 5:30PM; closed on Sundays. While we are currently unable to provide 24/7 emergency response, our ARL makes every effort to answer an animal’s call for help as quickly as possible.

To ensure that an animal gets the assistance that it needs, please follow these steps:

1. Leave a message for the team, if you are asked to do so.
2. Include this information in your message:

      • A telephone number where we can call you back, if needed. dog tethered outside
      • The location of the animal. Please include the street address; town/city; as well as any helpful landmarks, such as “under the porch of the red house”.
      • The type of animal.
      • A description of the situation, such as “cat stuck in tree”.

3. Contact your local Animal Control Office or Police Department for possible assistance, as they may have quicker access to an emergency scene.

In compliance with state regulations, some animal species require notification and special authorization from state agencies before the ARL’s Rescue Services team can provide assistance. We will inform you of any restrictions when responding to your call.

Thank you for taking the first step to help an animal in need! We all have a role to play to in keeping animals and people safe and healthy in our community.

After-Hours Emergency Assistance

If an animal is in imminent danger contact your local Animal Control Office or Police Department.

Wildlife Resources

Learn more about what to do when you see wildlife in distress – and how to find help!