May 22, 2013


The Roanoker Magazine had more than 51,000 individual votes in their annual Best Of issue, and Angels of Assisi won silver for Most Worthy Group to Donate to or Volunteer For.

Pretty darn cool, thank you!

Our non-profit organization started in August of 2001 with a mobile spay/neuter clinic, and a mission to stop the needless killing of homeless animals. At that time, well over 8000 animals a year were killed at our local pound, and high volume, low cost spay and neuter seemed the best way to lower those numbers. Nipping it in the bud, so to speak. Last year, after 80,000 + surgeries, the number of homeless animals killed was 1718. Still not ideal, but we're getting there.

The spay neuter shuttle evolved into a building, the building added an adoption center, and then a wellness clinic. Along the way, the dream of having a sanctuary for farm animals became a reality.

Angels of Assisi has facilitated thousands of adoptions, and helped with rescues ranging from hoarding situations to the Itty Bitty Kitty Committee for orphaned kittens. The Biscuit Fund for abused and neglected pets was another milestone, not only caring for and rehabilitating those animals, but also playing a part in the legal system to prevent owners from harming any more. 

Most of our funding comes from the services we provide, because we have always made it a priority  to be self-sufficient and provide security for not only our animals, but also for our team of over 30 staff members, volunteers, foster homes, and community. One of the best compliments we ever received was that "Angels of Assisi is one of the hardest working charities in Roanoke; they do not sit back and ask for money, they work for it".

Donations from the community bring it all together, and from the bottom of our hearts, we appreciate your support. Like pieces of the puzzle, everyone plays a tremendous role in the big picture; together, we have made some pretty remarkable progress.

Our promise to you is that we will keep up the hard work, and maintain the vision to make our community a progressive one for the animals and people who need a helping hand along the way.


May 15, 2013

Looking For A Cure

My right pant leg is all steamy, and I can't get up from my chair and move freely.

It seems that I have come down with something, and I just cannot shake it. Although it goes into remission, the affliction is a chronic one, always bringing heartache and hope for a cure. It's called I've Got A Scared New Office Dog Syndrome.

At the age of 14, Spike was turned into the RCACP (pound) several weeks ago. After the SPCA took his much younger housemate who was surrendered with him, the RCACP staff did a great job of making sure he would find a place at Angels of Assisi. And so he did.

My back office is one of the quieter places in the building, and he was brought to stay while we find a new home for him. He has blankets, beds, and chew toys, but he prefers to stay right next to me. My leg is steamy from him breathing on me, and he prefers to stand instead of sit so he can rest his chin on the coveted steamy leg. When I get up to move, he is right with me every step of the way, seemingly very worried that I too, will leave him and never come back. These photos of him are the best I can do, because he is always this close.


If anyone out there is looking to do good, to give back, or be a friend to someone in need, here is your chance. Spike is very easy going, and seems younger than his 14 years. He needs a someone to breath on and stay close to. In return, I bet he gives you the best years of his life, and makes a difference in yours. Please contact us at, or stop in and see him for yourself.

Dogs are a gift to mankind. They are happy and joyful and loyal by nature. They are pure, positive energy and teach by example. That is all that's required of them.
Alyson Noel    

May 9, 2013

And His Name Shall Be Hank

We received a call from the Regional Center for Animal Control and Protection on March 31 about a mama dog and her 8 puppies. Some of the puppies were literally born on the floor of the Emergency Vet Clinic the night animal control brought her there as a stray dog. Our own Vet, Dr. Phillips, happened to be working an extra shift that night and took care of her.

Once her stray hold time was up, the Regional Center staff had limited options with what to do with her, as a pound is a very unsafe place for puppies that young. She was not an overly friendly dog, to put it mildly, and would be euthanized along with pups if we did not take her. As protective as she was over the puppies, placing her in a foster home was not a good option either.

The decision was made to take mama and babies to Harmony Farm Sanctuary, and they have all thrived. Mama has actually come around and relaxed quite a bit, and the puppies are adorable and playful. They came to the Angels of Assisi wellness clinic for a round of shots today, and one found his way to Dr. Phillips as she was taking a break from surgeries.

It’s been decided that he is hers, and she is his. We will make it official when he can leave his mom in 2 weeks, and we can't wait to watch him grow up. He has been named Hank, and with Dr. Phillips he will be both a city boy and a country boy. Look out world, they’ll be taking you by storm very soon.

Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.
Anaïs Nin, The Diary of Anaïs Nin, Vol. 1: 1931-1934    

May 3, 2013

Into Her Sunset Years

Vanilla came last to us last week, when her owner literally left all her worldly possessions, grabbed her son and 2 dogs, and stopped at Angels of Assisi to surrender the canine members of her broken family on the way to a woman's shelter.

We took her dogs, with the promise that they would be safe and we would commit to them for the rest of their lives. She was relieved, thankful, and very gracious throughout the paperwork transaction. Her little boy was not exactly aware of what was happening, and she was trying to make it Just Another Monday, as if the sudden upheaval was not a big deal. Although brave, her smile had fragility and suppressed trepidation behind it; it was the kind of smile that could quickly turn to tears if someone went the extra step and was a little too nice. Our interaction must have crossed that vulnerable line, and tears leaked out as she hugged us extra-long on her way out.

Although we do not know where she is, or how to tell her, we hope that one day she will know that her senior girl has found a wonderful home. Vanilla’s new dad is quite smitten with her, and the small act of kindness shown when he gently lifted her into the car spoke volumes.

It is a relief that Vanilla is going to well cared for and safe. Her companion, Roxy, will also find her home soon. Here's to hoping their former owner, the lady with the brave and gracious smile, has found her safe place as well.