About Open Rescue

The Rescue Teams


Open Rescue is based on giving aid, rescue and veterinary treatment to any animal known to be suffering and in pain, yet trapped in confined conditions where they have been neglected and/or abandoned to slowly die. The focus is primarily on factory farms, the largest area of animal abuse in the world. The immediate aim of open rescue is to save lives and secondly to document the cruel conditions forced upon literally billions of animals around the world.

Rescue workers openly identify themselves and work as professionally and diligently as their colleagues in other rescue areas such as fire fighters, state emergency services or ambulance personnel. Unfortunately, until the rights of non-human animals are universally accepted it is necessary to sometimes trespass to perform the life-saving rescue work.

Open Rescue is based on the moral premise that it is wrong to knowingly let any individual, regardless of their species, die an unnecessarily slow, agonizing and painful death. Rescue workers are bound by compassion, competence and a willingness to always help others in need.

Activists involved in open rescue identify themselves because they are prepared to stand strong in their actions and suffer any consequences that may occur due to possible trespass. This website however, is dedicated to any activist, anywhere, anytime, who, with or without a balaclava/disguise puts their own life at risk to save the life of another.


Traditionally, when animal rights activists have freed animals from places of exploitation, they've gone to great lengths to ensure their anonymity. The clandestine nature of traditional liberations isn't because the activists are ashamed of their actions, but, rather, because they want to avoid imprisonment so they can continue to free more animals.

However, not everyone who rescues animals uses the traditional, clandestine model. In Australia, the Animal Liberation Victoria (ALV) Rescue Team has been conducting investigations and "open rescues" at factory farms for nearly 20 years. Contrary to the typical mainstream media coverage of clandestine liberations, the stories of investigations and the subsequent open rescues in Australia have been overwhelmingly positive. Because no property is destroyed and no one conceals his or her identity, no claims of the activists being "terrorists" are lodged. In fact, this tactic has become so well received in Australia that a member of the Australian Parliament joined ALV activists in openly rescuing factory-farmed piglets.

Because of the successes in Australia, it should be no surprise that activists around the world began conducting open rescues as well. In 1999, Open Rescue pioneer Patty Mark delivered a presentation at the United Poultry Concerns Direct Action for Animals Conference with video and still footage evidence of the success of the Open Rescue approach. Within a few years US group Compassionate Action for Animals had adopted the technique; followed by groups such as Compassion Over Killing, Mercy for Animals and East Bay Animal Advocates. Groups across Europe, including Germany, Austria, Sweden and Norway, are also active carrying out open rescues.

The Rescue Teams

Animal Liberation Victoria Rescue Team (Melbourne, Australia)
Animal Liberation NSW Rescue Team (Sydney, Australia)
Open Rescue Collective (New Zealand)
Vegans For Animals (Newcastle, Australia)
Animal Rights Advocates Inc (West Australia, Australia)
Auckland Animal Action (Auckland, New Zealand)
Animal Activism Queensland (Queensland, Australia)

Verein Gegen Tierfabriken - Association Against Animal Factories
Raddningstjansten - The Liberation Service (Gothenburg, Sweden)
Maqi - For Animals, Against Speciesism (Germany)
Befriete Tiere - Liberated Animals (Germany)
Realita.tv (Czech Republic)

North America
Compassion Over Killing
(Washington DC, USA)
Mercy for Animals (Ohio, USA)
East Bay Animal Advocates (California, USA)
Animal Protection and Rescue League (California, USA)
Compassionate Consumers (New York, USA)
United Animal Rights Coalition (Utah, USA)
Compassionate Action for Animals (Minnesota, USA)
GourmetCruelty.com (USA)

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