Pet Connections

Operation Petsburgh

Operation Petsburgh is one of Humane Animal Rescue of Pittsburgh (HARP)’s most critical and innovative programs. By transporting at-risk animals from areas where resources and medical care are limited to HARP’s East Side and North Side shelters, these dogs and cats are given a second chance at life. The animals then fulfill a great need for more four-legged family members in our community.

One of Operation Petsburgh’s most important elements is the skilled medical staff and expertise provided by Humane Animal of Pittsburgh. All animals arriving via transport undergo a complete medical evaluation and may receive other services, such as behavioral training, needed for a successful adoption. In some of the cases, more extensive medical treatment may be required.

One such case was Piglet, a four-year old pit bull, transported to HARP from a regional shelter partner in April 2020. Piglet had been brought to them from animal control after they believe she had been hit by a car. She had recently given birth and was still lactating, but no puppies were found. Piglet had abrasions all over her body and her injuries required FHO (Femoral Head Ostectomy), a surgical procedure aimed at restoring pain-free mobility to a damaged hip by removing the head and neck of the femur. The surgery was performed at HARP and Piglet went into a foster home to recover. Piglet made quite an impression on her foster family who decided to adopt her.

Piglet is one of the many animals who lives were impacted by Operation Petsburgh. Since the program launched in 2017, more than 5,000 lives have been saved. Operation Petsburgh’s partnerships span 13 states, 49 regional animal rescue organizations and 3 national animal welfare groups, all with the same goal: saving lives. Operation Petsburgh has created a “win/win” situation; allowing partner shelters to place animals that they may not have the capacity to care for and enabling Humane Animal Rescue of Pittsburgh to serve a larger community of animals and people. Additionally, HARP has supported shelter partners by providing needed vaccines, pet food, crates and blankets and sharing best practices.

To learn more or donate, please visit


December 14, 2023
December 14, 2023


November 24, 2023
November 22, 2023