November 30, 2011

Calling All Angels

Speaking of foster homes....

This little guy needs one ever so much. He has the type of mange that is not contagious, and needs a long term foster home to recuperate.

Please consider opening up your heart and home for a special holiday project. We'll provide the meds and a crate, you provide the love and healing. Any takers? Contact us at or call/text 540-400-2233.

Keep your Christmas-heart open all the year round.  
~Jessica Archmint

Mowgli Bowgli Biscuit

What's a full adoption center to do when we get a call about a neglected bull dog needing some urgent TLC? When such bull dog has horrible hips, a terrible skin condition, is almost blind, and needs some major medical care? Why, we'll send him to foster with our very own most awesome Dr. Spangler, that's what we'll do!

Meet Mowgli, the sweetest guy ever. He is in foster care with Dr. Spangler, and she is treating his medical conditions and giving him all the TLC he deserves. Mowgli is yet another that will benefit from the Biscuit Fund; a lifesaver to many. 


November 29, 2011


Webster's definition of Foster: affording, receiving, or sharing nurture care though not related by blood or legal ties 

Our definition of Foster: giving comfort, providing safety, taking a chance, being loved, feeling at home, and having the character to change the world, one step at a time.

Buddy went to a foster home over the weekend, and all appears to be going quite well. His foster mom reports that he is the perfect dog, but gets anxious when left alone. Seems like Buddy is making sure his boy Dylan won't be going anywhere for a while, and they both look quite comfortable.

The good folks who open their homes to pets in need will always hold a very special place in our hearts. Angles of Assisi and other rescue groups do the best we can with our various adoption centers, but there is nothing like a real family. 

And so we thank you, and know that, in reality, besides giving comfort, providing safety, taking a chance, being loved, feeling at home and having the character to change the world, one step at a time, what else is really important? 

Homeward Bound

Bud came to Angels of Assisi a neglected and skinny boy, and today he is going to a real home. As always, we thank Botetourt Animal Control for playing their part in rescuing these innocent lives.

Wishing Bud and his family many happy days ahead ♥


November 25, 2011


Last week, I took a walk through the Roanoke pound to meet a few dogs on the list to be transferred to Angels of Assisi. As always, the RCACP staff was kind and courteous when I asked to see every dog in the building. There were the usual big and small canines, all jumping up at their kennel doors looking for attention. We set a pretty good pace up and down the aisles, patting pit bulls, smiling at howling hound dogs, and admiring shepherds. And then we came across Chrissy, by far the oldest dog in the facility.

Her gray face hit me first, then the slow arthritic rise to greet me. She did not get very far, and instead lay on the concrete floor trembling. I offered her a pat through the chain link door and went to move on to the next. My heart, however, had different plans, and dropped an anchor to the floor. I could not move. Her cage card read "owners moved to Florida".

I looked at Trish, and asked if we could transfer her immediately. Even though it was closing time, her face lit up and she hustled to get the paperwork ready. Forms were signed and Chrissy was gathered up. The RCACP staff waved goodbye, wished us well, and off we went to Angels of Assisi.

We had not planned on adding a dog to our already full adoption center that day. On the drive to 415 Campbell Avenue, I imagined how the scene would play out at Assisi upon our arrival...

I will walk in with this unexpected, senior dog, who will most likely need medical care of some sort, and launch immediately into her story: "Can you believe the owners moved and did not take their dog, blah blah blah... ! I could not leave her there, blah blah blah..." Deb will look at me and ask "what have you done, Lisa!" and then look at Chrissy and get all melty. Tammy will get misty eyed and nod her head up and down. Bobbie will take one look at her, give her a smooch, and get busy on intake, all the while talking a blue moon streak. Aaron, as usual, will be designated dog holder, empathizer, and listener- he is super good at that :). Jenny will say "Lisa-aaaaah!! Where are we going to pu-uuut this dog?!?" as I hold my hand up to her face and ignore her. Meanwhile, Zach will hustle to get a place ready for her, even though I gave him absolutely zero notice of a new dog in his kennel area (I'm working on that Zachary, promise). Dr. Spangler will get to work on listening to heart and lungs, dream about a day when we have more healthy and highly adoptable dogs in our own building, and then shrug and get back to taking extraordinary care of the newest one. And my partner in crime will give Chrissy her best smile, the one that lights up her eyes and shows off her dimples, be thankful, understanding, and offer any help that we need.

And that is exactly how it went down.

Fast forward to a text message sent to the most wonderful foster mom, Jane. "I have the oldest dog in the western hemisphere that needs a foster home" Jane's reply: " thought I was the oldest fart in the western hemisphere? No? At any rate, I'll pick her up in 2 days, send a crate. Can't wait to meet her".

The fact that Angels of Assisi has the staff, volunteers, and supporters that are willing and able to help dogs like Chrissy, is a fact not lost on me for one second. Seeing the daily struggles of fellow rescuers makes us all the more aware of how lucky we are. No matter what the age or condition of a pet that enters our facility is in, you all step up every time, and for that we are forever grateful.

Here is your latest rescue, an old gal who was ditched by her owners when they moved to Florida. But you know what? She's going to be just fine, and together so are we.

 Gratitude is the memory of the heart.  
~Jean Baptiste Massieu, translated from French

Getting The Cat To Spay Surgery, One Way or Another

This little kitty came in for spay surgery last week, and we must admire the creativity of her owners for the Do it Yourself cat carrier! She, however, looks less than impressed with the entire process.


New Guy

Tiny arrived at Angels of Assisi a few days ago, and will be heading to his foster home on Saturday. A special thanks to his guardian Angels, Hany and Piper, for making sure this gentle giant was safe. As you can see, he is all smiles, and ready for his new adventure.

November 21, 2011

That Darn Irresponsible Public At Work Again

What In The World Happend To Bishop?

This handsome fella was turned into the Roanoke pound a few weeks ago. Here he is on intake.

And here's what happened to him....

Bishop was one of the first lucky dogs to benefit from the new volunteer program. Check out how a very dedicated and talented photography team worked their magic with the shots below. They sent these photos out over the intent, with a little description and some personal observations about him.

Happily, another volunteer saw his photo, fell in love, and offered to foster him. Bishop was transferred to the long term foster program through Angels of Assisi, and is doing great. His foster mom reports he is house trained, gets along with her dogs, and is a total bed hog.

Bishop could have been another statistic, but instead he is benefiting big time from the volunteers in our community. He is alive, he is well, and he is absolutely enriching the human lives that he touches. Good for you, big man. Next step, an adoptive home to call your own.

Thanks to all that took an interest in Bishop, and thank you especially to the RCACP staff for welcoming the volunteers with open arms. This could actually turn out to be a whole lotta fun ♥

November 20, 2011

The Whole Village-y Thing At Work

Little Sunshine was sent to Angels of Assisi by fellow animal rescue friends in Montgomery County. At a mere 8 weeks old, she spent the last 4 weeks of her life tied to a tree without any shelter. Animal advocates stepped in, and she was saved.

Here she is: warm, dry, and apparently with a food bowl that runneth over.

Another friend, Hope (of High Hopes Dog Training) knew of a family that was looking for such a pup, and connections were made. We're delighted to report that Sunshine went home on Friday, never to be tied outside again. She now has the chance for a new life, and it looks like she has already made a difference in the lives of her new family as well ♥

The staff and volunteers at Angels of Assisi need, support, and appreciate the collective efforts of our partners and friends in the rescue world. Groups working together do more for the animals than any one entity could ever do alone, and we are eternally grateful for you all.

It is a fact that in the right formation, the lifting power of many wings can achieve twice the distance of any bird flying alone.  
~Author Unknown


And Then There Were Four

On November 16th, we learned about 4 blind Chihuahua mix dogs that were turned in at the Roanoke pound. Calls were immediately made, and an Angels of Assisi rescue hold was placed. 

The four are litter mates, and 9 years old. They came to the pound by no fault of their own; their human mom died a month ago, and her husband is in the hospital now. We understand he is not expected to live either.

The pups arrived at Angels of Assisi on Friday, covered in fleas and with embedded toenails. The pound staff had done their best to trim the nails that were not embedded, but unable to do anything with the toenails that needed medical intervention.

Upon arrival, we opened the doors to their traveling crates, one by one. Each dog stepped out hesitantly, but trusting. And they stole our hearts as we picked them up for the first time; although blind and scared, they each turned towards our voices and offered a kiss.

We did our best to assure them that every little thing was going to be OK, but for now they would have to settle for a new bed and a promise to find a new home. These are the best kind of dogs- the ones who have lost it all, and are grateful for anything. Our hearts melted a little more.

Along with new beds, flea medicine, and antibiotics, we mentally put a little circle of protection around them.

Yesterday, we found out there was a 5th dog from the same house. He was a black lab mix, and very sweet, a "big brother" to the 4 little ones who could not see. Apparently he had hair loss and was thin, maybe because his owners had been so ill and could not take care of him properly.

Another immediate call was placed to the Roanoke pound- we would take him. A staff member  confirmed that he had indeed come in with the 4 little ones. He had been put in isolation, and she placed us on hold to go check on him. When she came back to the phone, her voice was shaking as she told us he had been killed. She was so sorry.

Why? Why had they not told us about the 5th dog? Maybe not a litter mate of the 4 little ones, but a big brother nonetheless? He could have been transferred with his family and been safe. Instead he died at the pound, separated from everything he had ever known in the world to be his. Why had not one person stepped up to protect him?

Here's why. There was no mention of him because he was killed on November 16th, the exact same day he arrived.

The "very very sweet dog who had some hair loss probably due to fleas and poor diet while his owners were sick and the neighbors were taking care of the dogs. He was really special to be so kind to the little ones who had such limited or no vision" was killed on the same day he was turned in. 

With the loss of their human owners, the little family of seven is down to four. Despite everything, the remaining ones continue to trust and love, and we need someone to step in and be the big brother they lost. We can't bring him back, but we can and will ask the leadership of the pound how this happened. And we can certainly protect the little ones in his honor. 

Rest in peace, buddy. The much needed change in Roanoke did not come soon enough for you.

God is closest to those with broken hearts.  
~Jewish Saying

November 14, 2011

We're Famous!

Here at Angels of Assisi, we've made the news and been in video clips for various reasons- puppy mill rescues, topping spay and neuter records, adding wellness visits, helping animal control with court cases.

We have no idea who broke the story, but just ran across this most newsworthy You Tube video. Take a guess as to what it is showcasing, here are a few hints: the comments include "Nice Find" and 'I have an instinct that"

What's your guess? Super-size puppy? World's oldest feline?  Premature baby ferret?  The staff finally cracked the code on getting every feral cat sterilized once and for all? Click on the read more link to see...

November 13, 2011


An update on Roxie- she is settling in well and seems to have a fondness for the couch. Her new family loves her, and is giving her all the time and patience she needs. A tremendous thank you to all.

November 11, 2011

Getting Closer

Roxie was originally adopted from the Roanoke SPCA, and at 10 months old ended up homeless at the Roanoke pound. Her owners were moving, and could not afford the pet deposit on their new place.

Good thing for Tina, a friend to many homeless animals. She spends her nights cross posting the available pets from the pound onto other websites, including the Angels of Assisi page. For Roxie, her efforts were well worth it. A family saw her photo and her story, and put in an application. We just transferred her to Angels of Assisi, and she will be going home at 3:15 this afternoon- can't wait!

Thanks to Tina, Chelsea, Teresa and countless others who work the web in their spare time for these dogs and cats. The Roanoke pound volunteer program will be starting soon, and combined with the awesome RCACP staff, the process of saving lives will be increasingly efficient.

One year ago, who would have guessed that the high kill shelter on Baldwin Avenue would have such a big turn around, and is becoming a place of hope and true shelter?  And no one is more thrilled than the staff and volunteers who made it happen. Keep up the good work everyone- we are so very proud of you.

Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just show up and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come.  
~Anne Lamott

November 9, 2011

How Much Do We Love The Franklin County Humane Society???

Creative, smart, and caring- a winning combination demonstrating the folks of the Franklin County Humane Society and the Franklin County Animal Control Shelter. We appreciate you all so much!!

Check out the video below and you will too!


November 7, 2011


So very tempting to join Tucker on the couch this morning, but the week must begin. Happy Monday everyone!

November 6, 2011

What A Difference A Day Makes

Yesterday, volunteers were allowed into the Roanoke Pound (RCACP) for the first time. The change came after concerned citizens advocated to the media, presented at city council meetings, and rallied in the streets as a united voice for the animals that don't have one.  

  • We needed the public to know that the no kill SPCA is not the same as the high kill Roanoke Pound where 4767 dogs and cats were killed in 2010.
  • We asked (and asked and asked) for volunteers to be let into the building.

The public did become aware, and proved they not are so irresponsible after all. So far this year, the kill numbers are better. The stats up to September 2011 show that 2069 dogs and cats have been killed. Still far from ideal, but an improvement. The intake numbers at the pound have also decreased.

A few days ago, the RCACP announced the volunteer program, and very shortly after the talented photographer Hany Hosny went in to work his magic. Since the pound does not have open adoption hours, the only way many of these pets will be seen is through their photo on the internet.

Up to this point, the staff was responsible for taking photos of the available pets. With their many duties, it's a wonder they have done this well. But, no offense intended, many of us just don't have that creative eye, myself included. And that's where volunteers come in. Take a look.


Black: Before

 This animal is currently at the Regional Center for Animal Control and Protection and is in danger of euthanasia. The Roanoke Valley SPCA does not have space for it at this time, but it is available for adoption.....Color:black

Black: After

Black- Love his focus, love his energy. Look at him. All dressed up and nowhere to go. Give him a place to go. Hook him up!

Carter: Before

 This animal is currently at the Regional Center for Animal Control and Protection and is in danger of euthanasia...Color:black

Carter: After

Carter, not Kotter! Such a good looking boy. Lean and athletic. Lots of positive energy. Let's hook him up!

Callie: Before


Calli: After

Open your Webster's Dictionary. Look up the word elegant. What do you see? A picture of Callie. Bring some elegance into your life. Adopt Callie.

Chloe: Before

 Color: orange

Chloe: After

Chloe is the kind of cat that makes dog people's allegiance to dogs waiver. She's so playful and loves people. Hook her up!

Heidi: Before

This animal is currently at the Regional Center for Animal Control and Protection and is in danger of euthanasia... Color:white/apricot

Heidi: After

Heidi is pocket size pibble, available and adoptable at the Regional Center for Animal Control and Protection in Roanoke, Virginia. Hook her up!


What a difference a photo and a and few kind words can make. And all because of a volunteer who wants to help.

A big thank you to the RCACP staff for braving the storm of the last few months. You remained professional, and we know it wasn't easy. We look forward to working with you, and can't wait to see the uncovered volunteer talents that will be brought to light for the heartbeats in your building.

The municipalities of Roanoke City, Roanoke County, Botetourt and Vinton have been outstanding in their support for change at the RCACP. Please make sure you thank them as well! 

To all of you who went to the council meetings, to your friends and neighbors, and to the streets in support of the homeless animals, you did it. The changes have started, and things will continue to improve.

And finally, to those who have been a force standing up for these homeless, neglected and abused pets long before any media story picked it up, you hold a place in our hearts like no other. It takes a very special, strong soul to remain steadfast in the battle between right and wrong, and we're proud of you. There are people and pets over that rainbow bridge who are too.

Public awareness of high kill rates at Roanoke pound and need for change- check.

Volunteer program- check.

Next on the agenda, a foster program and open adoption hours. Surely it won't be as hard this time around... right? Eh, either way, we're up for the challenge. Do it for Tiny. He's alive at the RCACP and deserves a second chance.

November 5, 2011

A Biscuit Of A Different Kind

The little Corgi below is named Biscuit, but she is not a Biscuit in the term as we know it. You see, her owner is actually the one that was mistreated, and is taking a month or so to get things back in order.

Meanwhile, Biscuit is going to an Angels of Assisi foster home. She will remain there until her family finds a way to keep them all safe from harm. Fortunately, they will not have the added stress of giving up their beloved pet while making some changes, and we are looking forward to the reunion.

Love is missing someone whenever you're apart, 
but somehow feeling warm inside because you're close in heart. 
~Kay Knudsen

November 4, 2011

Partners and Friends

The story below is written by the best of the best, Jess Kraybill. She's got a heart of gold, and a wealth of talent and smarts to go with it. Her mission is appreciated far beyond any inner circle, and we know this girl is going to change the world one day. She already has for Heath and countless others.


Sometime in September, five emaciated, abused, terrified pitties were dropped of at the Franklin County pound. The Franklin County Humane Society and Angels of Assisi stepped up and saved their lives. One of those dogs is now my foster dog. 

Heath was terrified when I first met him - he nervously licked my nose and then flinched when I raised my hand to brush my hair out of my face. It was so clear that he desperately wanted to trust people, and that there was a playful puppy inside him somewhere, but because his first year of life was filled with abuse and neglect, everything terrified him. 

He was so scared that he peed when I first took his picture a few days after he'd been rescued. Dogs are amazing, though - in the past few weeks, he's begun to realize that people mean treats and food and head scratches and all the good things that he and his buddies have deserved all along. 

A family in North Carolina has applied to adopt him, and they're just thrilled to meet him next weekend. Still a little timid around strangers? Not a problem! A little bit slow to warm up at first? That's cool! They're so excited to meet him, and it sounds like a perfect match. This is why I love rescue - he'll be thoroughly loved on by his 9 and 11 year old human sisters, and they've already started collecting a pile of toys for him. 

Looking at him as he is today - in love with my dogs, romping around the back yard with them, so tickled to have bones and peanut butter Kongs to chew on, and always ready to jump up in my lap for a quick love fest and a nap, I can't imagine the world without this awesome dog. 

As always, we thank the people of the Franklin County Humane Society. You all are an inspiration to the rescue world, we are grateful for your dedication, and proud to call you friends. 

There is one friend in the life of each of us who seems not a separate person, however dear and beloved, but an expansion, an interpretation, of one's self, the very meaning of one's soul.  
~Edith Wharton

A New Biscuit

Rosey was transferred to Angels of Assisi this afternoon for medical treatment. Her skin sores are from flea bites and must be very uncomfortable. Despite everything, she is a sweet girl and even let a few cats show her who was boss through their kennel doors. 

Thank you to Roanoke City Animal Control for partnering with Angels of Assisi- it has been wonderful to work with you and we appreciate all your hard work.

We can't wait to see her heal and become as beautiful on the outside as she is on the in. As always, donations to the Biscuit Fund are appreciated and support dogs like Rosey. 

Rosey has permission to go to a foster home next week, if you are interested in meeting her, please email us

Once again, we thank everyone involved in her rescue - she is certainly worth it ♥

Clinic Cuteness

This great big gal was one of 8 dogs to have a low cost dental cleaning done at Angels of Assisi today!


Here's a great shot of little Wiley and his new dad after his adoption papers were signed. Looks like a match made in heaven to us! Thank you to WSLS for promoting the cat special last Monday- it worked!

If I had to sum up Friendship in one word, it would be Comfort. 
~Terri Guillemets

November 2, 2011

The Pump

It's little Pumpkin Biscuit, soaking in the sun. These days she is a happy pup, and spends her time exploring, eating, wagging her fluffy tail, and napping. Good things really do come in small packages.

Look at hopelessness in the face and say: "We are simply not meant to be together."  
Hold courage's hand and walk away.