North Shore Animal League

Yesterday was an exciting and emotional day for me.  I was given the Lewyt Humanitarian Award by the North Shore Animal League for my animal advocacy work and for the donations we have been able to make from the proceeds I have generated from the sales of my dog food, Rachael Ray Nutrish.  I’m pleased to say that we have generated hundreds of thousands of dollars (a growing number) in proceeds that I will continue to give to rescue and rehab organizations and people, such as NSAL.  The sad part of the lunch was listening to the statistics around puppy mills and seeing the videos of how these poor dogs are treated.  Recently  the NSAL was able to bust up an operation and they found pups whose hair was so matted and knotted that their skin wasn’t getting any air to breath. I cried and so did my buddy, Beth Ostrosky, Howard Stern’s wife, who I now call Beth O’Stern.   Beth is very active with the League and ran a marathon to raise funds for them last year.  We were one of her sponsors.

How cute are these pups they brought to lunch?  If you are interested in learning more about the NSAL, check out their site here.

I’m thankful for the folks at Dad’s, the company who makes Nutrish, because they have also been a strong supporter of the League and other advocacy programs and they helped me to put out a product that I could feel good about.  Many of their ingredients are locally sourced and there are no fillers or by-products.  Real meat is the first ingredient.  My team visited their labs this year and found them so spotless that they are qualified to manufacture human food!  If you are interested in a sample, go here.

81 Responses to “North Shore Animal League”

  1. Rob says:


    I think you are making a great contribution and applaud your efforts to help save dogs from puppy mills which are truly horrible and unnecessary but exist only because people purchase from them instead of saving a homeless animal from their local shelter.

    I hope in the future you will extend this compassion to the veal calves that that will be tortured for the delicious veal recipe you recommended on FoodTV July 11th, 2009.

    Although they are not as cute and are out-of-sight compared to household pets, the treatment of the livestock (cows, pigs, chickens, dairy, eggs) to produce our food is not only cruel and sad but could be improved with small changes if only consumers request them. A truly noble cause for someone of your status and appeal.

    Keep up the great work!

  2. Trying to find a veterinarian pro bono in Orlando to help a homeless couple with a dog that has a tumor or some other kind of growth. They take very good care of this dog and she helps protect them as they live out of a shopping cart filled with their possessions.
    Any ideas?
    Please check Pathways Renovation Project in this gallery for photos of the dog

  3. Kristen says:

    Hi I saw some photos from this event on access hollywood and one in particular caught my eye. There is a photo of you with a dog they label as “spot” and what made it so interesting is that he looks exactly like my own dog that we rescued over ten years ago. I was just curious whether you had any information on him. Thanks!

  4. Pat M says:

    Hi Rach,

    I don’t know if you heard the news about the Boston Zoo is closing and some of the animals will be euthanized. I think it’s horrible that these poor animals have to be put down. Your show reaches so many homes, can you please mention something about this so maybe these animals can be saved. The article said that their grant was lowered from $6.5 million to $2.5 million so now they don’t have enough money to keep the zoo going. Do you have any suggestions what can be done?

    Thank you and God Bless you.
    Pat M

  5. Julie says:

    Hi Rach,

    I volunteer for a small IRS-approved 501(c)(3) not-for-profit rescue group, located in Brooklyn. Since its inception in early 2004, we have placed over 400 cats (and a handful of dogs and rabbits) into loving, permanent homes.

    We’re interested in applying to Nutrish for grants of food or money to help our People and Pets in Crisis program. Can you tell me where to find grant applications or how to apply for help?

    Thank you! Julie

  6. Sarah Brinton says:

    Hi Rachel!

    I just wanted to say that all of your work for animal rescues and developing your new dog food warms my heart! It makes me believe there is still good in the world. Sometimes I think people forget about all of the wonderful animals that need homes in our animal shelters.

    I have a dog (mut) from a local shelter and a cat that we found at the dump :) … she’s not trash though, haha! I searched far and wide for a good food for my animals… found Buffalo Blue and my dog did not like it, haha… my cat will eat anything! So when I found out about your dog food, I switched him… and he loves it!!

    If I ever hit the lottery, or come into a good amount of money, I will start my own shelter (similar to Dogtown on Discovery Channel). I would adopt more animals, but this economy has hit me hard, and I can barely afford what I have. However, I occasionally foster an animal and am putting together a dog walk at our Ymca, where I work, to raise money for a local no kill shelter. Sometimes, I feel frustrated that I can’t do enough for these poor helpless animals, but hearing about what you have done makes me feel great! At least there are kind people like you in the world to use their resources to help this important cause.

    Thank you for all you do,
    Sarah Brinton

    P.S.- Love your recipes and show also!! :)

  7. Debbie says:

    Dear Rach I love your show it is one show I really enjoy watching..it gives me lots of ideals on what to make for me and my little one..since my husband passed away.last yrs its just me and him..its kinda hard some days..but we get by..its hard to cook..small meals..when u are from the south and used to making big meals..also hard to cook when u have hand me down dishes and pots and pans..keep u the good work fro u make many smile when we are having a hard day thank u god bless ps we have 6 dogs that we have gave a home too

  8. Karen Adames says:

    Dear Rachael,

    I love your show, your fantastic recipes for humans and dogs and your magazine. I love the fact that you are so passionate about dogs and I just wanted to congratulate you on all the work you do for rescue organizations.

    I am writing to you from Toronto, Ontario, Canada and I wanted to share with you this story about this poor Chow dog who is probably the worst neglected dog that any one has ever seen. This story has touched my heart so much as I am sure that it will touch yours too. My beloved cream Chow, Prince, passed away two years ago at the age of 15 and this Chow whom they have named Phoenix (because they hope he can rise from the ashes) reminds me so much of him. I would love to adopt this dog but emotionally and financially might be hard for me. I swore that I could never get another dog because Prince meant so much to me (he was my third dog), and I know that Phoenix is going to need alot of help medically and that will be very expensive.

    I know that your Rachael’s Rescue only helps organizations in the United States but maybe something could be done to help this poor dog who
    seems to have a very strong will to survive because he is miraculously still alive and I am hopeful that he can overcome all of the obstacles that are in his way.

    I sometimes feel that Phoenix is my dog Prince reincarnated because they have the same eyes and the same strong spirit.

    Please go to these websites and check out Phoenix’s story. Even if you can’t help him, I am sure that you will remember this dog forever.

    Thank you.

    Karen Adames


  9. Kristen Staubitz says:

    Hi Rachael.

    I just wanted to say that I love your shows and cookbooks. I also think it’s great that you’re doing all this work to help other people and animals.

    We recently changed our Border Collie, Milly, to your dog food. She seems to love it. Unfortunately, so do two of our three cats. The unfortunate part of that is their stomachs don’t seem to be able to handle it.

    Any thoughts on putting out a cat food? With how much my cats love the dog food, I can only imagine they would love a Nutrish for Cats just as much.

    Thanks for everything!

    Kristen Staubitz

  10. Debbie says:

    Rachael, My 13 yeear old son & I have been trying to adopt a dog, or better still find free puppies, but being a single parent of two on disability, there isn’t enough money to pay the price that the mspca wants for a homeless dog. Ilook in the newspaper every day for fre pets but there is nothing (nothing is free anymore). I understand that the money asked for the dog goes to a good cause, but how about just making sure that these animals have a good home and someone to love them?? We had to put our lab “D.O.G.” down due to cancer and my son and I have been lost without her. If any one knows of a free dog needing a good home,were’re here. tHANKS

  11. jean says:


  12. Abby Strasser says:

    Congrats on your charity work. Now I associate you with 2 things I love, pasta and pets. Which brings me to my question- do you have a recipe for spaghetti and meatballs that is both flavorful and affordable for say 250 people?

    I volunteer at the Will County Humane Society in Joliet, IL. Our no-kill shelter is having a spaghetti dinner in February as a fundraiser. Making it a family event as well as a pre-Valentine’s Day dinner, we are going to show the movie “Lady and the Tramp.” We would appreciate any advice your staff and you might give us. Also, if you have any contacts in the Chicagoland area that might help us out with food donations…. we would turn cartwheels really.

    Please visit our website http://www.willcountyhumane.com. We are doing our best to improve the quality of care and attention we give these animals as we work to find them permanent homes. Volunteers of all ages and backgrounds spend time cleaning cages, walking dogs, socializing kittens, providing laps for cats,etc. On average we provide shelter for 90 cats and 30 dogs as well as the occasional hamster, ferret, and bunny rabbit.

    Thank you for promoting animal welfare.

    Abby Strasser

  13. melinda brett-horner says:

    your dedication to the care and safety of animals is wonderful. i have enjoyed voting in your mutt madness contest. the announcement of the winner is anxiously being awaited.
    we have a similar facility here in florida, called the hundred acre woods, a sanctuary for abused and injured animals. i only recently discovered the woods when our paper ran a story on a fawn that had been injured, and was rushed to the hundred acre woods where it is now residing, being cared for, and improving. i think the hundred acre woods could qualify for includion in your mutt madness contest next year, and would like to know what is required to apply as a participant. thank you again for all you do for animals.
    in closing, i must tell you how much i really enjoy your wonderful cooking magazine. thank you, melinda

  14. Linda Rockhold says:

    I sponsor two kitties at the North Shore Animal League. We have had up to 12 cats at a time, that is a lot for our small house. Right now we have one, his name is Twilight, and he is somewhat sociopathic, so we may not get more. (LOL) We also are down to one dog, an Akit/Lab mix, Boo, who was rescued from a bad situation by a friend. Unfortunately, Boo has prostate cancer. He is the most gentle dog I have ever had. He is good with all 6 of our parrots! He has nver chased a cat, squirrel or other creature, and completely ignores the 30 plus ducks who visit our pond! They are amazed!
    I think the high incidence of kidney failure and other diseases in pets is a direct result of horrible ingredients.

  15. Rachel,
    I work at a non-profit animal sanctuary and here we house about 130 dogs and 50 cats. We recieve no funding and run off of donations. Our food is also donated and we just lost a major food supplier. We are low on funds due to the economy and are looking for your help. please help us if you can. It’s hard getting help in such a small location. thanks and God Bless,

  16. Ann B says:


    I am not sure if you will actually read this, but I heard that you were donating money to only NO-KILL shelters. Have you ever been to a shelter that has to euthanize the animals? When the NO-KILL shelters turn away incoming animals because they have reached occupancy, where do you think these unwanted animals go? The staff and volunteers at the humane societies and shelters do not wish to euthanize, but they have no choice. The main answer is to spay and neuter. I really wish that you would go to a shelter that is not NO-KILL so you can see what really happens. With the current economy, these shelter’s need donations more than ever especially when high profile celebrities seem to negate their mission by donating only to NO-KILL shelters.

  17. Deb Leib says:

    Rachel, I don’t know if you will read this, but I just saw your 30 minute meal show where you gave tribute to your dog. It brought me to tears, because I lost my 5 year old Golden Retriever a few years ago and it is very hard to get over it.I feel for you!

  18. Crystal says:

    It is wonderful to see compassion for (some) animals promoted. But who greater than you to promote awareness that when people purchase factory farmed animal products, they contribute directly to the suffering of animals. Every day regulations are broken and often animals are hung and processed while still conscious. Previous to this many are beaten and electric prodded.
    Please use only humanely, locally farmed and slaughtered animal products (if you ‘need’ to use them at all… ). After all, why love some while we kill others?

  19. Rachel
    I am involved with a rescue here in Northern California called Lucky dog Rescue. We just celebrated our first year annverseary. We were able to rescue 107 dogs from high kill shelters and have placed 98 of those into good homes. We had 8 special needs dogs with various treatable conditions, 8 were treated andwe were able to place all 8 of the dogs.
    In total LDR has spent over $8,000 dollars to date
    Oliver the 4th sibling from a litter of 4 lab puppies is waiting for anterior cruciate ligament which will cost us $5,000. needless to say this has hurt us finacially and we are always looking for someone to partner with. I saw on yiour website that Bad Rap is on there. We use Bad rap for our personal dog and always enjoy our time with them. Learning from them. Is there a way we could get our website listed on your website and is there a channel for a presentation on Lucky Dog rescue that we can follow. We are always looking for partners and funding. Anything you can do is wonderful and 100% goes to the dogs. I look forward to hearing from you.


  20. Rose says:

    Okay, this is a total long shot that Rachel will see my comment considering this was posted two years ago. But I have faith. And considering some of Rachel’s passions—dogs and entertainment—I believe she’d want to add us to “Rachel’s Rescue” and “How Cool Are these Guys.”

    We host a live game show called “Life’s Ruff” here in Chicago. The show goes up in August, 2011 at the Gorilla Tango Theater and if our 2009 run was any indication, people love it. In fact, we were featured on MSNBC Nightly News with Brian Williams.

    Here’s the backstory: We audition dogs that have been rescued by their humans and picked about 15-20 to go through positive reinforcement training classes, which are taught by professional trainers who work for the Shedd Aquarium. (By day they train marine mammals, by night they satisfy their yen to help dogs.)

    The teams learn fun tricks, like spin the wheel, press the Easy button, play basketball. The best are cast in this show, the remainder are slated for future shows as they continue to train.

    The show is balls-out fun. And in the process people are learning all the most important messages (we have a sly, not-in-your-face messaging strategy) about adoption; BSL; and spay/neutering. We also team up with pre-approved rescue groups and feature dogs for adoption.

    We believe our method of bringing attention to all the important issues facing the homeless population of dogs who are given up on for FIXABLE BEHAVIORS really resonates with people.

    People love their dogs but many don’t know how to deal with the rescue-dog “package” that often includes a dog with poor manners. PRT can help fix that! All the human needs is a commitment to their dog and they can wind up with a stronger bond with their dog pal instead of the dog bearing the brunt and often returned to the shelter. And we know what’s likely going to happen next. Our dogs deserve better.

    CAN RACHEL HELP US GET THE WORD OUT? I don’t want to inundate with links but I sure would love to send you more information. WE WANT RACHEL TO KNOW US!

    Thanks for this opportunity.

    Rose Spinelli
    Life’s Ruff Producer

  21. Nich0le says:

    This is my first post on here so I hope that I am in the right area. I want to bring some attention to a bill that has been introduced in Michigan by Rep. Bledsoe. More or less this bill will ban MI citizens from owning a certain type of dog (pit bulls).


    For anyone that thinks this is a good idea please don’t just think about it as getting rid of pit bulls “a dangerous breed” because that is a myth. It is not about what breed it is because this is where it all starts but where will it end?

    Thank you,

    I hope that this makes some type of impact :)


  22. Michaela says:

    Hi Rach! I have watched your show for many years now and think your the sweetest person ever. I´m on maternity leave with my 6 months old babygirl Molly (here we are home with the children at least one year before they can start at kindergarden, i know it´s not like that in USA) so we watch your show every day. But they are right now sending episodes from 2009 so i´m missing what your up to now. Just wanted to say hi from Sweden! Hope you are happy and feeling good! Love, Michaela and Molly

  23. Rachael: I just love your show, and I have a lot of respect for your humane philosophy toward animals. I spend most of my time with domestic animals, and once in a while I have the privilege of hanging out with rescued exotic animals as well. Wouldn’t know what to do without my four-legged and winged clients! Thanks for being the kind of person you are!

  24. Alison says:

    I love what you do for the animals in need because I’m an animal lover too. I work a non-profit no-kill dog rescue where we take in behaviorally challenged dogs and train them so that they can find their forever home. Our training process is a combination of positive reinforcement and unique, specialized training techniques. Our aim is to maintain and improve the quality of dog’s life. We also rescue dogs that are not behaviorally challenged and train them to be service dogs for people who need service dogs, but either cannot afford them or have been on a waiting list along time and still have a long wait a head of them. We have a deaf Pit Bull in our service dog program proving people wrong about the breed every day.

  25. klara says:

    Hey Rachael! Have you seen this: http://www.jasonmecier.com/frachray.html it’s a “painting” of you made completely out of pasta!! Thought it would be fun to know if you didn’t. Love your show. Al thought it’s kind of lame that the shows comes much later here to us in Sweden. It’s often the Christmas shows airs in the summer here.

    Super cute dogs and I think it’s is so nice of you to help the poor animals who really needs help.

    Big hugs from Klara! :D

  26. Amy Evans says:

    Hello Rachael my name is Amy Evans and i wanted to share my love for Pitts with you and possibly ask for some of your advice on starting a rescue out of my home in Texas. We our proud owners of our second pitt and are so in love with their compassion, loyalty, and companionship that we want to extend that out further into the community. I recently posted on my Facebook page (Amy Richters Evans) about having a Pitt as a family pet and received 111 comments, some good and some bad, which truly bothers me and my husband Stephen. We would LOVE to show people the true breed instead of allowing the media to do so, that is why i am contacting you. If you have ANY advice about this please contact me!!! I admire your bravery with this issue and your willingness to teach people about these beautiful animals and would love to hear from you with help, Thanks for your time and have a wonderful day…..and remember….kiss a pitt :)

  27. gail says:


  28. Leah Powell says:

    Good Morning: I have heard of your rescue. I am a fostering mom for Boxer and a member of Blue Ridge Boxer Rescue. My first rescue dog was about 1 yr old. He was found in a dog trap and the men that took him out beat him with the catch poles. His head was swollen, left eye was a mess, he had a hole in his throat and litterly skin and bones. We name him little man because he is so small. He is doing great, eating like crazy and playing with my sons boxer, Harley, putting on weigtht. That’s when I decided to start building a Animal Rescue. We have found 63 acres to purchase for $155,000. This facility will be built through donations only and hopefully build the largest and nicest animal rescue center on the east coast. The name of our facility will be “Havenly Haven Animal Rescue Center”. We hope to house cats, dogs, horses, cows pigs, etc. We plan to hold monthly adoptions at the facility with food and games for everyone, a boutique for animals. Have childrens day, elderly care day, cookouts for prospective adoptive parents,etc.. We will do transporting of any animal that gets adopted. from our facility or any other facility. We plan to have two vets at the facility, one on site at all times, with a lab, surgery facility an a recovery building. Animals will not be in kennels but a stall where they will have more room. We hope to have a big arena where people can come and go through training classes with their animals as well as our people going through classes as well. I have found 63 acres of land in the country for $155,000. Our first hurdle is to purchase the land. We have ruffley ten buildings including employees facility, cafeteria, children’s play area. Our brochures want be ready until after the holidays. I want to rescue as many animals as we can and find homes for them. I want to fence in about 20 acres so the animals can go out in fresh air to run and play. I want to have healthy foods and snacks for all animals at the facility. Our web site will be after the first of the year. For all donations please email me and I will give you the bank information for your donations. Thank you for your time.

  29. Sara says:

    Dear Rachael, please help. I live in a very agricultural area in upstate NY. Our town board has just approved a “puppy mill” operation to go be allowed in our area. This in not a breeding operation- we have those that are fine. This is not an agricultural business as the town planner has said (dogs, as you know) are not agricultural animals- we have both dairy and beef. The people who have applied have abandoned their operation of 200 dogs kept in tiny wire cages and cited numerous times by the USDA and now re trying to move here. There is protest, but we need help to put a stop to this “business”. Please help.

  30. BEVERLY LONG says:

    Hi Rachael, As you can see my email address is IAMBELLASMOMMY and I wanted to let you know that bella is my chihuahua/terrier mix 7 year old rescued dog. She too is the light of my life! Just like izzy I couldn’t imagine my life without her. I too lost a little rescued chihuahua in Sept. 2001 one week to the day of 911! I was so devested about her death and then I happened to be back east (just left the Pentagon and then was in PA) ready to go to NY on 911 when all hell broke lose. I was visiting with my daughter who was in the NAVY on leave with me and we got stuck in Atlantic City when everything happened. When we were eventually able to get out of Atlantic City all we could do was head back to Wash. where her boyfriend was living and working at the Pentagon (also in the Navy at the time). I was so overwhelmed with grief that I couldn’t remember how to smile any more. All that took my mind off of it was to go to the store called puppies are us. I found a tiny Yorkie and bought her to have something take my mind off of my fears. When we finally made our way back to my home in CA. my parents fell in love with my little Yorkie and wanted her so bad! I hated to do it but on my fathers birthday I gave him my little dog (Sophia) as his Birthday gift and then I had nothing to love. So I went on line and searched dogs that needed to be rescued and found my little Bella! She was the runt of the litter and just melted my heart when I saw the litter of all blonde puppies but one tiny grey one (they call Blue colored) that was so much smaller than the rest. I filled out a bunch of papers to qualify to adopt one of the puppies and eventually was picked to adopt one of the litter!! She was the last of the puppies no one wanted…they took all the blonde ones first but I was THRILLED TO DEATH!! I got my baby and she is now the best doggie I have EVER HAD. So well behaved, calm, loving, kisses and loves everyone and gets along with all animals too! I just had to share my adoption experience and would hope that on your show you could do more to explain to others that adopting an animal helps so many unwanted animals find their forever homes and we really need to also spay and neuter our animals to stop there being so many unwanted pets out there! A lot of these on line pet seller – breeders are really horrible breeding mills that are very abusive to their animals and adopting is so much better and dearly needed to help these poor animals get out of a terrible situation. Thank you Rachael for hearing me out and hopefully you can help get the word out on adopting your next pet from a shelter…they truly need your love and a GOOD loving home! Thank you…Bev Long and Bella too!

  31. Dan says:

    Hi Rachael and animal lovers,

    Everyone please check this story out from California I have been talking to several animal/dog rescue organizations and they are complaining, protesting, contacting the news since it looks like 2005 in regard to Devore Animal Shelter in San Bernadino. Please check it out and see if someone can help shut this place down. There is a petition with about 5,000 signatures already. Nothing seems to work and I think they need a celebrity to step in and get some big swingers in there to save lives.


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