Organizations wishing to participate in GFAS Peer to Peer are asked to certify that they meet the following minimum criteria. Organizations are welcome to have multiple team members register to participate.
If you have questions about any of the following terms, or are unable to authorize that you meet these terms but would like to provide an explanation, please email .
Unless otherwise required by authorities, animals are not transferred to individuals, sanctuaries, or other facilities that lack the appropriate expertise and/or resources and/or facilities to care for them. Animals are not ‘loaned’ to other facilities.
Humane euthanasia of an animal is an acceptable final option when all other options to relieve pain and suffering have been assessed. Euthanasia is not used as a management tool, to create space for more animals.
No intentional animal breeding occurs, and sound practices are in place to prevent propagation. An exception may be made for rehabilitation and release centers engaged in a bona fide breeding-for-release-program with available and appropriate release sites, conducted with specific conservation goals, in accordance with applicable law.
Acquisition of animals generally occurs through donation, rescue, or confiscation. No commercial trade in sanctuary/ rescue center animals occurs (including, but not limited to, the sale of animals, animal parts, by-products, or offspring), and the sanctuary/rescue center does not knowingly engage a third party to purchase an animal on its behalf.
No direct contact between the public and wildlife occurs, including being allowed to hold, carry, feed, walk with, or hand food or other items to animals. This also includes entering enclosures with wildlife. In certain rehabilitation/reintroduction programs, with young orphaned animals, volunteers who are suitably trained and part of the facility’s structured volunteer program may assist staff in carefully structured programs that ensure the safety and well-being of both the animals and the volunteers.
The sanctuary/rescue center rarely publishes material that portrays wildlife as tractable. This includes but is not limited to: photos in which staff or others are shown holding or petting wildlife; or displaying wildlife on leashes or dressed in human clothing. In situations where text, photos, video or other media are published portraying the above, steps should be taken to add text to the publication (website, brochure, etc.) that explains the reason for the contact and discouraging the idea that the animals would make suitable pets.
Invasive Research Practices
No resident animals are made available for participation in research studies unless the studies are strictly observational, do not negatively impact individual animal welfare, and do not interfere with the normal daily activities of individual animals. Interventions that cause pain or distress are not acceptable.