Defenders of Animals Inc. will hold its 28th annual Homeless Animals Day/Candlelight Vigil/Award Ceremony and Raffle at the Governor Sprague Mansion in Cranston on Aug. 20 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
The Homeless Animals Day/Candlelight Vigil is held in conjunction with the International Society for Animal Rights campaign and serves as an opportunity for animal advocates from around Rhode Island to band together on a special day and jumpstart new spay/neuter/adoption campaigns while rekindling existing programs in their communities that raise awareness about pet overpopulation.
Defenders of Animals Inc., through a partnership with the Providence Animal Rescue League, has made it possible for Rhode Islanders to have their cats and dogs spayed/neutered, inoculated and microchipped at a reduced cost and in some cases for free.
In addition, the organization has helped families financially when funding is available with the medical costs with the Warwick Animal Hospital and the Apponaug Animal Hospital.
For the past 40 years, the group has promoted adoptions made through municipal and private animal shelters. The Rhode Island-based nonprofit has endorsed pro-animal legislation on the national, state and local levels since 1978.
The statewide organization, founded by Dennis Tabella and Patricia A. Tabella, works to defend the rights of both companion animals and wildlife through education, legal and legislative activism.
Humane Hero Awards will be given out at the event, including RI State Representative David A. Bennett, who represents District 20 in Warwick. Representative Bennett is Chairperson of the House Environmental and Natural Resources Committee, member of the House Health and Human Services Committee and the House Judiciary Committee.
Representative Bennett introduced House Bill 7021 Sub A, which was signed into law by Governor Dan McKee on June 29, 2022. The new law allows emergency medical treatment to police dogs injured in the line of duty, which would include transporting by ambulance when it does not inhibit the ability to provide emergency medical attention or transportation to a person requiring such services.
Awards will also honor state police dogs, including Massachusetts State Police dog “Frankie,” RI State Police dog K-9 Tao, RI State Police K-9 and RI State Police dog “Ruby.”