December 29, 2012

New Arrivals

Angels of Assisi welcomed 40 new bunnies yesterday, after they lost their home to a tragic fire. Our hearts go out to the family and friends of the four family members who lost their lives a few days ago, leaving the bunnies behind. We'll do our best for them, and tomorrow begins the spay/neuter marathon to prepare for adoption and new homes. For today, they are resting and enjoying fresh fruits and veggies.

During transport:

Settling in:

A special thank you to Valley Feed in Staunton, Virginia for all their help with the rescue, and to WDBJ7 for following the story here in Roanoke.

We cannot go back and undo the horrible events of last week, but we can try and make things better for the 4 legged creatures that need help now, and we are off to a great start. The community is welcome to come visit them anyday between 2-6 pm, even on the holiday. They are available for adoption, and any remaining bunnies will have a safe haven at our Harmony Farm Sanctuary. As always, we appreciate your support!


December 27, 2012

Bunny Rescue

A tragic house fire has left over 40 bunnies without owners to care for them, and they will be headed to Angels of Assisi today or tomorrow.

We do not much more information right now, but are preparing for their arrival.

December 21, 2012

Watson Goes Home

Watson went home today. We believe that Tina, who rescued him as an emaciated puppy and nursed him back to health, helped find him a perfect match, and will always be watching over her boy. A very, very big thank you to his new family, you are wonderful. Looks like that tennis ball shooter is going to be fired up very soon!!

Your guardian angel loves you. You are precious to her.
- Lorna Byrne, 



A house fire caused this little fellow his home at 2 am this morning. Thankfully, everyone made it out safety, and rescue crews found him 20 minutes later inside. Because he needs medical care that his family cannot provide at this time, they signed him over to Angels of Assisi this morning. We are hopeful he can go back after things settle down; for now he is receiving IV fluids and waiting on x-ray results. We'll keep you posted.

Thank you to all who helped this family, to Tammy for always going the extra mile, and to Dr. Carter and his staff for being there when we need you.


A morning spent at Harmony Farm Sanctuary is about as good as it gets. The pigs grunt and groan their way awake, goats shuffle for primo spots during the grain delivery, and cow bellows echo in the morning sunshine. Here are a few shots from the morning routine.

Ogie sleeping in.

Checking for scraps.

Izzy says "good morning!"

Bella the Helper Cow- she follows us everywhere!

Hobo getting a foot trim. 

No internet, no work deadlines, no holiday stress... just back to basics with nature and a variety of fellow heartbeats. Peace on earth, it really does exist.

December 20, 2012

Homeless Times Two

The homeless shelter for people is not too far from Angels of Assisi, and occasionally we have folks who have to check in there arrive on our doorstep with their beloved pets, tearful, and desperate for a way to keep them.

Over the last year, we have housed a handful of these animals, providing free room, board, and medical care while their owners try and get back on their feet. Sometimes it works out and these families are reunited, and sometimes it does not. It did not work out for Haley. She arrived early last fall, and her human came in to take care of her as much as he could, understanding that the Assisi staff would pick up when he was absent. The absent times became more and more frequent, and he finally realized that it was time to let her go, and in so doing unselfishly gave her the opportunity to find a new home for her senior years.

Haley is a wonderful girl, and has always been on her best behavior with us, kind of like she knew she was a guest. She's now available for adoption, and we'd love nothing more than to take the "I need somewhere to belong" feeling away, and find her a new home. We wish the same for her former owner, and while his fate is out of our hands, we wish him well, and peace of mind knowing his faithful companion is safe and sound.

Life takes us to unexpected places... love brings us home.
- Unknown Author

December 19, 2012

Ad Perpetuam Memoriam

Tina, age 29, of Wytheville, Va., daughter, sister, niece and friend extraordinaire, left this earth to take her place among the stars on Sunday, Dec. 2, 2012. Instead of flowers, her family asked that donations be made to the Wythe County Humane Society or to the Presbyterian Children's Home of the Highlands. Then they went on a search to place her beloved dog, Watson. 

She left behind a joyful, rambunctious shepherd mix dog named Watson. He was a rescue dog. He was found as a young pup abandoned on the roadside in West Virginia. He came to her painfully emaciated and extremely stressed. She loved and nursed him back to health. He is about 2 and 1/2 years old, weighs around 45 - 50 pounds, has been neutered and his shots are up to date. He is very friendly, highly intelligent (he can open doors with his mouth) and knows basic commands.

Watson arrived to Angels of Assisi last Saturday, along with his favorite tennis ball shooter.

He immediately recognizes this toy, and must be wondering where his shooter, his girl, his caretaker, his friend extraordinaire is. We cannot imagine what Tina's family is going through with her sudden departure from this world, but we can do our part and take care of her beloved companion. Staff and volunteers are tackling this task, for the lady none of them even knew, with heavy hearts entwined with persistence.

We are grateful for the caring people in our Angels of Assisi family, like Teresa Powell who took some beautiful photos yesterday. Thank you to all who embrace this holiday season by letting go and realizing what is really important: getting along, and giving back to others. Life, it is precious. Let's honor Tina's by finding her boy a home.

December 16, 2012

New Friends

A special thank you to the good people from Temple Emanuel this morning! This group came in this morning and cleaned, fed, watered, swept, mopped, cleaned dishes- you name it, and they got the job done. We all had a great time meeting everyone- come back anytime!

December 6, 2012

Making The Big Time

The Virginia-Maryland Dog magazine is dedicated to providing readers with the best quality of information and education through the contributions provided by a group of highly experienced and well-respected individuals within the pet industry to include veterinarians, nutritionists, and trainers,  just to name a few.

Two very special Angels of Assisi volunteers are featured in this issue for their amazing photography work. Teresa Powell and Hany Hosny combined their skills a few months ago, and started the Dog Around Town photo shoots showcasing some wonderful Angels of Assisi dogs strutting their stuff in our beautiful city.

Click here for the link, then "view digital edition". The Dog Around Town article is on page 42,  with an added bonus of our very own Olaf on page 24. He is in a wonderful foster home with Tina Robertson, and available for adoption.

Thank you to all for lending your talents, and your hearts, to the animals awaiting their forever homes in our adoption center. You give them a face, a voice, and the rest of us hope that working together, we can make a difference. Well done!


A great photograph is one that fully expresses what one feels,
in the deepest sense, about what is being photographed.

~Ansel Adams

New Guy

A recent plea for help from our friends at Appomattox Animal Control:

Our happy ending for Gampie has not turned out the way we had hoped. Gampie had a rescue commitment so he was taken to a local vet hospital to be neutered and fully vetted before making the trip. Very sadly, while at the vet’s office, blood test results showed that he is in the beginning stages of renal failure. That means that the rescue can no longer take him into their care. Gampie is still wagging his tail, happy, eating, drinking and has no idea he is sick. We don’t know how long Gampie has to live, but we would love to see him live out that time in a loving home, whether he has months or several years. Before any final decisions are made, we want to see if there are any other options for Gampie to live out the days he has left with a family, whether it is with a foster family or an adoptive family. It is obvious he has not been cared for during his lifetime and, of course, we would love him to know the best of humanity before he passes to the Bridge. If you can open your home to Gampie, please email us at and we will be happy to discuss what the vet's office has told us about his future.

Stories like this always kick our volunteers into rescue mode, and Gampie was no different. He's on his way to Angels of Assisi this afternoon, will spend the weekend with us, and then head to the most awesome foster home for senior dogs. Little does he know that he has home cooked meals, beds, sweaters, and unconditional love waiting for him. Can't wait for you get started on your new journey, little guy. It may or may not be short, but guaranteed to be sweet.

December 4, 2012

On The Road

Our adoption center staff just arrived in Raleigh, North Carolina for a seminar called Adoption Options. They'll be learning new information on medical intake procedures, decreasing stress in a shelter environment, and how to best utilize our off site adoption program at Petco. 

A big shout out to the PetCo Foundation for sponsoring the event, and we are looking forward to new integrations into our ever evolving adoption center.


December 2, 2012

Language of Love

This afternoon, an older gentleman arrived at the adoption center armed with a cat carrier. He did not speak English well, so instead handed us this typed note.

In short, Pumpkin the cat needs a new home. The man, who could not communicate this need verbally, has been looking out for this kitty to the best of his ability for quite some time, and is now out of options.

Welcome to our family, little guy. We know you never asked for much, and are alive because of the kindness of the gentleman who brought you to our doorstep today. We hope he left with a peace of mind knowing that we'll do our best, because you both deserve nothing less.

Otis Goes Home

It was just a few days ago that Otis arrived at Angels of Assisi for emergency surgery, and today he went home. As of now, his intestinal track seems to be good order (he pooped, and all the world rejoiced! Or maybe that was just us!) and he is as happy go lucky as ever.

Thank you to Libby at RCACP for making sending him our way, and making this photo possible. We'll see Otis in about a week for a follow up surgery. We are looking forward to his visit, but thrilled that he will not be staying. Best of luck to the new family!