History

1995

MSPCA law-enforcement officer for 26 years Bill Phinney dies of AIDS-related complications.

1996

MSPCA launches Phinney’s Friends program to help people in the Boston area living with HIV and AIDS keep their pets.

2007

Phinney’s Friends program expands its help to elderly people in the Boston area.

2009

MSPCA shuts down Phinney’s Friends program. A group of volunteers founds Phinney’s Friends, Inc. The independent nonprofit inherits all former Phinney’s/MSPCA clients and starts serving them with ongoing pet care and financial assistance for pet-related expenses. The new Phinney’s Friends decides to start with an expanded scope, to help anyone low-income in the Boston area (Route I-95 belt) keep their pets, no matter what hardship they are going through — be it an illness, loss of job or other crises.

2011

Phinney’s Friends launches a pet pantry in Cambridge MA, supported by a network of donation bins located in several business establishments. The project is powered by volunteers who transport, sort and distribute donated pet supplies to low-income families in need.

2012

Phinney’s Friends moves to Lincoln MA.

2012

Phinney’s Friends expands its services by launching its Emergency Program, to help low-income people with one-time emergencies such as vet bills, temporary fostering and temporary in-home pet care. This program also expands Phinney’s Friends reach to the greater Boston area, covering families with pets living in the Route I-495 belt.

2013

Phinney’s Friends launches its Pet Boost Program to support AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts in Boston with pet supplies. Phinney’s Friends sends to the nonprofit pet items from the Lincoln MA pantry and purchases any essential pet supplies not available as a donation.

2013

Phinney’s Friends launches the Phinney’s Ride — a biennial bike ride that covers 150 miles from Stow MA to Fitzwilliam NH in two days to raise funds to help low-income people with HIV or AIDS keep their pets.

2015

Phinney’s Friends expands its coverage to statewide, offering services to low-income families residing in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

2016

Phinney’s Friends expands its Pet Boost Program to help not only help AIDS Action Committee of Massachusetts in Boston, but also help eligible low-income families located in Massachusetts who need regular help with pet supplies, pet medications or veterinary services.

2016

Phinney’s Friends launches Liam’s Fund — a specific fund to financially support low-income families in Massachusetts who are struggling to cover the expenses of their diabetic dogs. The fund is established with resources from The Deirdre Dickinson Memorial Fund, in honor of her nephew, Liam.

2016

Phinney’s Friends celebrates its 20th anniversary by launching its annual Paws for the Holidays Festival, which takes place at the historic (and pet-friendly) mansion Pierce House, in Lincoln MA. It offers opportunities for Holiday shopping as well as various fun activities for people and their dogs.

2017

Phinney’s Friends starts a program to help Massachusetts towns obtain pet oxygen masks for their fire departments. The first town to obtain pet oxygen mask kits is Lincoln MA.

2017

Phinney’s Friends doubles its pantry operation by launching a second pantry, in partnership with Cotting School. The new pantry, located in Lexington MA, receives donations collected by volunteers, and sorts, stores and catalogs pet food items. The pantry in Lincoln changed to focus on sorting, storing and distributing non-food items, such as pet beds, jackets, crates and toys.