Our international work
Animal and human welfare are increasingly connected worldwide, through issues such as food quality and safety, public health, sustainable agriculture and the environment.
We share our expertise and experience, across Europe, Africa and Asia. In some countries RSPCA International is the only international animal welfare organisation present.
Our areas of expertise
Through advice and training we help those responsible for writing laws and regulations to protect animals. We support education authorities and train teachers to promote the values of animal welfare education – responsibility, respect and kindness. And, we work with people who care for animals every day to ensure they can meet the needs of their animals throughout their lives.
Many countries have large numbers of stray dogs who face a range of welfare problems, and can pose a risk to people. We work to develop humane ways of managing and catching stray animals.
Practices such as shooting and poisoning, are inhumane and ineffective in addressing the underlying reasons for serious stray dog problems. Well-enforced legislation can prevent conflict between animals and people, reduce neglect and cruelty, and encourage responsible pet ownership.
We’re a founding member of the International Companion Animal Management (ICAM) Coalition. The group shares information and ideas on the dynamics of stray dog and cat populations. ICAM has developed guidance on stray dog and cat management, as well as on the welfare basis for euthanasia.
In recent years we’ve seen a sharp rise in meat, egg and dairy production worldwide. Secure and safe food supplies depend on the quality of husbandry, veterinary care and nutrition that farm animals receive.
The challenge is to meet the increased demand for animal products while achieving higher welfare. This involves large commercial producers and small-scale, self-sufficient farmers. In less developed parts of the world farm animals are not just a food source, but an important part of people’s livelihoods.
Our work ranges from promoting setting standards for farm assurance and food labelling schemes like Freedom Food, to advising on improving legislation and implementing World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) guidelines.
Our aim is to improve farm animal welfare at all stages of the animals’ lives – on farm, during transport through to slaughter.
Animal welfare is an important part of wildlife conservation. In order to save protect the a population of a species at risk, we have to care about the individual animals.
Wild animals are often harmed by human actions such as the use of snares, traps and poison. The current elephant and rhino poaching crisis is endangering whole species, and is causing immense suffering to individual animals.
Parrots, tortoises, meerkats and even hedgehogs are increasingly popular exotic pets. We’re working with policy makers, pet shop industries and the general public to advise on the suitability of different species as pets.
In developing countries, people, livestock farm and wild animals are all struggling to use the same land and resources. Diseases such as rabies can spread between dogs, people, lions, hyenas and other wild carnivores. We’re working in several African countries to deliver rabies vaccination programmes to village dogs.
Welfare in wildlife conservation
Our partnership with the Department of National Parks and Wildlife in Malawi will help to secure the welfare and conservation of elephants and other protected species. We will work with the department to:
- Train the police in new wildlife crime investigation techniques.
- Work with the judiciary to ensure that offenders are given appropriate sentences.
- Ensure that customs staff are well trained in identifying potential wildlife traders.
Millions of animals are used in laboratories around the world each year, for research, testing and education. Since 2007 we have worked closely with government, academic institutions and professional bodies in both Europe and Asia.
This collaboration has included:
- Sharing or translating RSPCA materials.
- Providing conference speakers.
- Delivering training.
Courses and workshops are developed with local partners such as laboratory animal science associations, and are funded jointly. They are always designed to take into account the particular research conditions and needs of the host country.
The most common course topics include legislation, training for personnel, ethical review, the 3Rs (replacement, reduction and refinement) and animal housing and care.
Help animals overseas
Find out how you can help fund our work with animals abroad.