Animal Shelters and Rescue Groups in Dubai |

Animal Shelters and Rescue Groups in Dubai and the UAE

Here’s a round-up of the support groups, shelters and rescue organisations looking out for cats and dogs across the UAE

Posted on

13 January 2014

Last updated on 10 July 2019
by Rebecca Roberts
Animal Shelters and Rescue Groups in Dubai and the UAE

Animal welfare groups across the UAE always, always have animals for adoption.

Homeless cats and dogs, and dumped pets, are one of the sad realities of living in the UAE.

As a result, rescue organisations in Dubai and across the country always, always need your time, support and supplies for the rescued animals they’re taking care of.

Anything you can do to support these animal welfare groups in the UAE would be appreciated.

SEE ALSO: Rules and regulations for dog owners in Dubai

After all, as Mahatma Gandhi said, “the greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”

The laws surrounding charity and fundraising in the UAE

There are strict laws in place in the UAE to regulate charities and fundraising efforts. These also apply to rescue groups and organisations in the country who shouldn't request for monetary donations or contributions towards veterinary bills, adoption fees or similar, unless they have the proper authority approvals and licences.

Animal welfare organisations, like the Emirates Animal Welfare Society (EAWS) are a legally registered Animal Welfare Association in the UAE, for instance... Therefore, those rescue groups operating under the remit of EAWS are also legally operating.

Others, like K9 Friends and PARA UAE hold a trade licence with royal approval from their respective states. Others are operational under their municipalities.

SEE ALSO: How to adopt a dog in Dubai

Despite the great efforts of some animal welfare and rescue groups in the UAE, licensing requirements render their operations illegal and thus we must urge anyone to take caution when offering monetary support to any rescue group or animal charity in Dubai and the rest of the UAE.

In our guide, you’ll find all rescue organisations in Dubai and the UAE below, with contact details included.

Here’s our full, detailed list of the not-for-profit animal shelters in Dubai, animal welfare groups and animal rescue organisations in Dubai and UAE…

Rescue groups in Dubai and UAE

K9 Friends

Founded in 1989, K9 Friends operates as a rescue organisation, who help rehome stray and abandoned dogs in Dubai. Their team help reunite lost dogs with their owners, or care for them until new ones are found. Providing shelter and high standards of kennelling, K9 Friends also offer veterinary care to their dogs.

Animal Action UAE

As a part of Emirates Animal Welfare Society (EAWS), Animal Action UAE are a group of volunteers entirely dedicated to helping animals in the region. They’re also dedicated to helping education pet lowers in the UAE, bringing them up-to-date news and offer support for pet owners in the UAE.

Protection of Animal Rights Association (PARA) UAE

Previously and also referred to as Dubai Animal Welfare Society (DAWS), PARA UAE are all about animals and their welfare in the UAE. The group help with rescuing, fostering and re-homing animals, and also run a TNR (trap-neuter-release) programme.

Red Paw Foundation

This non-profit organisation is registered with the UAE’s government under the umbrella organisation of the Emirates Animal Welfare Society (EAWS).

The foundation is entirely volunteer-operated and sustained, and they work on rescuing abused and injured cats and dogs. RPF vaccinate, microchip and neuter all rescue cats and dogs, and provide for their healthy until they are fully recovered and healthy enough to be adopted. The group also run a TNR programme to help control the UAE’s population levels of cats.

Strays Needing Interim or Furever Friends (SNIFF)

Founded in 2013, Strays Needing Interim or Furever Friends (SNIFF) is an animal rescue voluntary group, which aims to rehome the UAE’s stray and abandoned animals. The group aim to educate people on the importance of animal welfare in the UAE.


38smiles started in 2011 as a personal quest to help stray animals in Dubai. Since, the animal welfare group has grown into a group of like-minded people who are determined to help as many stray animals as they can to become beloved pets.

Kitty Snip

  • Email: [email protected]
  • Facebook: Click here
  • Operates under the licence of Emirates Animal Welfare Society
    • This group advocates humane stray animal management, and is a community based animal welfare group that work together to help the feline population of Dubai. The aim of Kitty Snip in Dubai is to trap, neuter and release the stray cat population, and their team also help with re-homing kitties with loving families… One cat at a time. Check out their Facebook page for updates on regular adoption days, too!
Rescue groups in Dubai and UAE

Abu Dhabi Animal Shelter

The Abu Dhabi Animal Shelter for stray cats and dogs in Abu Dhabi was established in 2010, following the decision of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council. The animal shelter aims to enhance animal welfare for feral cats, stray dogs as well as abandoned and surrendered cats and dogs by finding suitable homes for them, and giving them a chance to live in a loving family.

Rescue Of Abu Dhabi

  • Facebook: Click here
  • Operates under the licence of Emirates Animal Welfare Society

This non-profit organisation are a member of EAWS, and work hard to improve the welfare of community strays of Abu Dhabi through TNR programmes, as well as through organised adoption days.

Animal Welfare Al Ain (AWA)

Legally registered under Emirates Animal Welfare Society (EAWS), the Animal Welfare Al Ain (AWA) group is a small group of volunteers, who are dedicated to helping sick, injured and abandoned animals in Al Ain. They do not have a shelter, and rely purely on the community to help improve the lives of animals in the emirate.

Stray Dogs Centre UAQ

This registered, non-profit organisation is on a mission to help abused, abandoned, neglected and forgotten stray animals in Umm Al Quwain (UAQ). Formerly known as SOS for Emirates Dogs, Stray Dogs Center UAQ was formed in 2013 out of an urgent need to address the stray animal population in UAQ. The centre have a private ‘no kill’ shelter, and have helped to rehome almost 1000 animals since 2013.

Sharjah Cat & Dog Shelter

Since opening in 2010, this non-profit shelter helps rescue abandoned pets and finds them homes. Their team also work on encouraging involvement from the local community, as well as educating children and the public on the importance of animal welfare.

Ras Al Khaimah Animal Welfare Centre (RAK AWC)

Ras Al Khaimah Animal Welfare Centre (RAK AWC) is a non-profit animal welfare organisation that helps to rehome, socialise, train and take care of the health of cats and dogs. They also offer a one-stop shop for all pet needs, including a veterinary hospital, boarding and pet shop.

Supported by the government of RAK, with the patronage of His Highness, Sheikh Saud bin Saqr Al Qasimi, Ruler of Ras Al Khaimah and opened its doors in January 2010.

Animals & Us (Fujairah)

  • Facebook: Click here
  • Operates under the licence of Emirates Animal Welfare Society

This community-led animal rescue group are based in Fujairah, and help to rescue dogs and cats who are injured, abused or in danger of being abused – as well as stray and abandoned animals.

Al Mayya K9 Adoptions

Al Mayya K9 Adoptions and Kennels focus on saving and re-home dogs in need of a new start in life. Operating in both Fujairah and the United Kingdom, the organisation is owned by HRH Sheikha Latifa bint Mohammed bin Rashid, daughter of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai and wife of the Crown Prince of Fujairah, Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamad.