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Animal Haven Shelter Celebrates 50 Years Of Rescue In NYC

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) Animal Haven Shelter is celebrating it's 50th Anniversary of rescuing homeless animals in New York City. 2017 also marks another milestone for this not-for-profit, no-kill rescue organization, which recently moved into a brand new state of the art space at 200 Centre Street in lower Manhattan.

animal haven shelter exteriors
(Clockwise from top left) Animal Haven's Shelter in Flushing, Queens, 251 Centre Street, and the new location at 200 Centre Street, Manhattan

"In 1967 a little group of women in Hollis, Queens decided they wanted to rescue cats and they started Animal Haven", Executive Director Tiffany Lacey told 1010 WINS. The shelter later moved to Flushing, operating out of a small house for decades. Animal Haven eventually made its way to Manhattan, where they operated out of 251 Centre Street for ten years, before losing their lease in 2015.

animal haven shelter
The interior of Animal Haven's new shelter at 200 Centre Street in Manhattan. (Photo Credit: Susan Richard)

After an exhaustive search, they hit the jackpot, finding a new spot just two blocks away at 200 Centre Street, where Lacey says they hired ARQ, the same architects who designed the ASPCA's adoption center here in New York as well as the SPCA in San Francisco and PAWS in Chicago, to design a state of the art facility. The shelter took over a year to build, and so during that time this organization for homeless animals, was itself homeless. "We put 80 animals in foster", says Lacey, "and we rented an office right across the street. The Mayor's Alliance for New York City's Animals was so helpful and lent us their adoption van, so during the week we'd pull it up outside the construction site and hold adoption events." During that time they continued to take in animals from a variety of sources including owner surrenders and from the city shelter, Animal Care Centers of New York City. Animal Haven even receives dogs rescued from the dog meat trade in South Korea.

Take a tour of the new shelter with 1010 WINS' Susan Richard in her video web show All For Animals:

All For Animals TV #46: Animal Haven 50th Anniversary & New Shelter! by allforanimalstv on YouTube

Lacey says the new space was worth the wait. "It's light. It's bright. It's airy. People are responding to it. We need to staff up to accommodate people walking through our doors." There are three different dog "suites" with individual kennels that are isolated for air, odor and noise control, which helps to minimize stress for the animals and prevents the spread of infectious disease. There are also two designated "meet & greet" rooms where adopters can spend some time with their potential new family member.

animal haven pets
Some of the wonderful animals up for adoption at Animal Haven (

The cat area consists of two storefront-type rooms that house multiple cats. "It's very light and bright with lots of windows" Lacey told 1010 WINS, "and the public that walks by can see them, like window shopping, but for adoption." There are also smaller rooms housing mama cats and their babies, kittens not quite ready to be adopted out, adult cats who prefer to be alone, and cats who need to be isolated due to illness. As with the dog suites, the cat rooms are each air, noise and odor controlled.

Despite the fabulous new digs, there continue to be the same challenges faced by other animal rescue organizations, including finding enough homes, operating costs and vet bills. Lacey adds that they're always in need of volunteers and accept not only financial donations, but also supplies. Check out their wish list on Amazon by clicking HERE.

To donate money, click HERE.

On Wednesday, June 14th from 6:30pm to 10:30pm, Animal Haven will mark its 50th Anniversary with a gala at Capitale, 130 Bowery Street, NYC. Get ticket info HERE.


(All For Animals is a production of Susan Richard/New Day Media and is presented on as a courtesy. Email for more info (that's email, not gmail!).

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