October 31, 2013

Play Ball!

Look who is feeling better- it's Harvest! She is on a new food that is helping with her allergies, her hair is growing back, and her wonderful personality is shining through. Best of all, we found out she loves to play ball. Seeing a broken down dog come to life and get her groove back is what the Biscuit Fund is all about.

Thanks to all who have followed her story and donated to her cause- it worked! Next up- a home of her own.

It is a happy talent to know how to play.  
― Ralph Waldo Emerson

Big and Little

A special thank you to Investigator Nelson Tolley for saving this itty bitty kitty from being hit by a car several nights ago. Not only did he save him from the road, but he fed him with a tiny eyedropper all night and kept him alive.

Rumor has it there is a big soft spot for animals under the official-ness of the dress shirt and tie, and we believe it 110%. Thank you, sir, for helping the smallest of the small make it in this this big world. You remain a hero to us.

Everyone has been given a gift in life. Some people have a gift for science and some have a flair for art. And warriors have been given another gift. They would no more misuse this gift than a doctor would misuse his healing arts, but they yearn for the opportunity to use their gift to help others. These people, the ones who have been blessed with the gift of aggression and a love for others, are our sheepdogs. These are our warriors. On Sheep, Wolves and Sheepdogs(From the book, On Combat, by Lt. Col. Dave Grossman)

October 25, 2013

Someone Special

Hazel has been with us for a few months, and has been a mama not only to her own babies, but to several other litters as well. When we introduced them to her, she never batted an eye, and simply took the orphaned kittens in and cared for them as if they were hers.

All the babies are independent now, and Hazel has been spayed and is ready for home of her own. Being the world's best cat, we often let her join us in the clinic and employee break room. She has become a part of our everyday lives, and us a part of hers. This morning she took it upon herself to supervise Dr. Spangler, and her compassionate instincts took over once again, as she stayed with big old 160 pound Sebastian while he recovered from surgery (the tube in his mouth is a normal post operative routine, and gets removed as the animals wake up).

We love this cat. She has given and given and given, and now it is her turn. Please consider opening up your home to help her, as she has helped so many these last few months; you won't be sorry, we promise!


October 24, 2013

Kitty. In The City.

Watson was the star for the latest Kitty in the City photo shoot at the beautiful Center in the Square displays. A big thank you to Dr. Sears for the hospitality; we had a wonderful time and appreciate the chance to showcase the cats waiting for adoption! Thanks also to our resident cat advocates, Megan and Chelsea, for always giving your best for the felines - we love you for it!

The Angels at Assisi 10.24.2013

What is you dog's name?
Sebastian. He is 7 years old.

Why is he here today?
His left ear is swollen, and I wanted to get it checked out.

Where did you get him?
He belonged to my ex-girlfriend..........
when she died, I took all of her animals in.


Cute dog! Thank you for coming to Angels of Assisi today.
Thank you- I told them when I made the appointment that she looks kind of like a pot belly pig, but that she is really the biggest little dog you will ever see.

What is her name?

How do you spell that?
I am not exactly sure, I just got her.

Where did you get her from?
This girl, who was being helped by Goodwill, it did not work out. She had to go back to a group home, and I did not want to see her dog go to the pound. I took her in, and I want to get her shots done and get her spayed. She also has a little tumor that needs to be taken off. The girl on the phone said we get all of that done for about 95 dollars. I can do that.

October 23, 2013

The Angels at Assisi

I have often told people in the animal welfare world that if they want to see the very best of humankind, the everyday people with a tremendous compassion for animals, then come and sit in our clinic lobby for an hour or two. Come meet the people who have patiently waded through our phone system, those who have driven and searched for a place to park, or those who have walked or used public transportation. Come talk to those who have brought their dogs in the most expensive of harnesses and those who have no choice but to bring their cats in extra large Bojangles carrying cases. They all have one common connection: they want what is best for their animals, and they are doing their best to provide them care. We are honored that they choose Angels of Assisi to meet them halfway.

Here are few from today.

What is your dog's name?

Why did you bring him to Angels of Assisi today?
To get needles and medicines for his shots. He has a vitamin deficiency.

Where did you get him?
I bought him because he needed help.


Do you mind if we take a photo of you and your dog?
Sure you can!

What is her name?
Oreo, like the cookie.

What are you here for today?
She got updated on all of her shots! And the best part, a toenail trim!

Where did you get her?
My nephew, he was moving, long story. We did not want her to go to the pound, she is a great dog and we love her.


Is this the dog we saw on facebook last night? The one with the horrible mange?
Yes, she actually looks better since yesterday. When we saw her for sale, we knew she needed help. We took her to the Botetourt Vet yesterday, and she is on 3 medications.

What is her name?
Dori, With an i.

Are you having trouble today? Is that why you brought her here?
No, we just wanted to make sure we were doing everything we could for her.

And so the stories go, day after day, of good people doing good things. We're starting this new feature on the blog to share these stories, and truly appreciate the goodhearted folks who make them happen.

Harvest Has Her Day

It's been a good day for our girl Harvest. Through the power of the internet, her story has circulated far and wide, and this morning she got a surprise package all the way from Texas.

Those big hearts on the boarder must have also sent along some big luck, because she, along with her new presents, new bed, and medication, is going to foster today. Her new family is completely up to the challenge of taking the worried look off her face, and we know they can do it.

Hang in there, sweet girl, better days are ahead.


October 15, 2013

Biscuit Girl

We got a new girl today, and she is suffering from neglect and infection like many before her. She has a long road ahead, but we'll get there. She has been started on medications, and we are giving her some time to get used to her new digs, with the initial goal of getting her more comfortable, both inside and out. Baby steps.

As always, donations to the Biscuit Fund for abused and neglected pets are put to good use, and much appreciated.


It took some major kahunas to show up for neuter surgery sporting such a shirt, but this proud pooch did! Hats off to his awesome family for giving us a laugh yesterday!


Letting The Dogs Out

There is no doubt that a shelter is a stressful place for dogs, and there is even less doubt that the Angels of Assisi staff and volunteers do the very best they can to make our dogs as balanced and socialized as possible, readying them for new families.

It's called shelter enrichment, and a big part of it is letting dogs be dogs. They need to run and jump and bounce and roughhouse: they need to play. We know the history on some of the dogs pictured below, and they have come from horrific living conditions; some came with no background history whatsoever. Either way, we get to know them as they are when they arrive, and make adjustments to their plan of care in the adoption center. Playgroups are a huge part of improving their well being, and it does our heart some good to watch them letting go and having fun.


And, when it is time to come inside, they get peanut butter filled toys, for a job well done. Volunteers not only keep us supplied in the PB & K (peanut butter and Kong) supplies, but they also help prepare them, often two or three times a day.

The shelter dog enrichment program is one that we are extremely grateful to provide, and it would not have happened without the dedication of our trainer, Bobbie. She lives and breathes for the dogs in our care, and has had the good sense to surround herself with some pretty amazing mentors and volunteers. Thank you to the many who fall in that category, and to the many who donate in other ways to make home away from home a better place for the canines in our care, and giving them a solid foundation for their future.

When it was dark, you always carried the sun in your hand for me.
- Seán O'Casey,

Thanks to Carrie for capturing the memories!

October 11, 2013

We See You Loud & Clear

In times of tragedy, look for the helpers. They are always there.
Perhaps on the sidelines, but the helpers are always there.
~  Nancy McFeely Rogers Fred Rogers Mother

Ever since Louie was found in a dumpster in Franklin County, he has been in foster care. While there, he has been raised to be a pretty wonderful dog. He arrived at our clinic today for his neuter surgery, with his head on his mom's shoulder, and armed with his very own pink blanket. After some hugs and reassurances, she left him with us, but only for the day; she'll back at 5 pm, and sign his adoption papers.

The moral of his story is this- yes, some pretty horrific person left him at the dumpster to die, or possibly hoping that he would be found and rescued. Either way, he was in danger. Louie, however, is safe, sound, and very much loved today, all because of the kindness of a stranger. All because of those helpers in the world are doing their thing, and making such a difference.


October 10, 2013

Feeling Much Better

Little Abby came to us yesterday via Botetourt Animal Control when her dad unexpectedly ended up in the hospital. He is feeling much better, and got the all clear from his doctor to be discharged this morning. She was one happy pup to see him, and we were one happy staff to see the reunion.

Helping pet owners in times of need is becoming more and more of our mission and daily routine at Angels of Assisi. We thank you for supporting these progressive programs, and in so doing keeping families together.

No one is useless in this world who lightens the burdens of another. 
- Charles Dickens


October 9, 2013

Tuning Up The Vocal Cords

Last night, we partnered with representatives from the ASPCA and the Humane Society of the United States for a seminar on effective animal advocacy. From them, we learned about animal welfare laws, how ours here in Virginia stack up, and the process needed to change some, including a push for a ban on fox penning. `

Jill Deegan, a prosecutor from Botetourt County, shared with us the flip side- how the laws are enforced. She also spoke of the importance for all of us involved in animal welfare to know these laws, and the simplicity of finding them and understanding them -
check it out here.

Thank you to all who came, we enjoyed networking and meeting some wonderful new friends! Look for news of an Angels of Assisi task force and an upcoming trip to Richmond for a Humane Lobby Day, where Virginia citizens concerned about animal welfare converge on the state capitol to lobby for better laws to protect animals.

We are deeply grateful to Laura Donahue & Lena Spadacene from the Humane Society of the United States, and to Chloe Waterman & Andrew Binovi  from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals for all their efforts in sharing this important piece of the puzzle with us. We're ready to learn more, and ready to be the voice for those who cannot speak.



Never be afraid to raise your voice for honesty and truth and compassion
against injustice and lying and greed.
If people all over the world would do this, it would change the earth.  
― William Faulkner


October 6, 2013


One of our very special puppies was just adopted by a very special family. Her new dad is a Marine, and she will be moving south with him soon. Our staff really enjoyed the visit, and have stopped to take moment to appreciate the extreme sacrifice so many men and women make for our freedom and safety. We wish all three of them safe travels now, and forever,

Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference in the world.
But, the Marines don't have that problem.
~  Ronald Reagan

October 5, 2013

Saturday Night Special

Our stinky Botetourt Biscuit got a much needed makeover today, in the form of 4 (!) baths, and hours on the grooming table. The feeling of being free from all the matted hair must be pretty exhilarating, because he has not stopped moving since. Our friend Liam picked out a new name, Grover, and we think it fits just right.

We've made another step in the right direction, and promise to get some better photos this weekend. He was a dog on the go today, and it just seemed best to let him enjoy the freedom. Tomorrow will bring more medications, additional skin care, and some much needed one on one time with staff and volunteers.

Please watch out for each other and love and forgive everybody.
It's a good life, enjoy it.  
― Jim Henson

October 4, 2013

Biscuit Boy

Botetourt Animal Control brought us this poor soul today. He is matted, long toenailed, stinky, and incredibly sweet.

He is also the recipient of some extra special TLC, and we thank Dr. Spangler, Alex, and "I'll be there in 35 minutes" Carrie for their help and expertise in taking care of him. For tonight, he had a nice meal, medications, and a good rest. Tomorrow will bring a haircut, and a new beginning.

We are able to care for animals like this with help from the Biscuit Fund, and for that, we thank you. Stay tuned for some updates tomorrow.

October 3, 2013

So Then This Happened

These adorable bunnies just arrived- they are a little scared, but will settle in and be just fine. They range in age from a few months to a few years, and one is blind. They are getting checked out and will be available for adoption and foster soon.

They have given us an extra dose of cuteness, a reason to smile, and the realization that it's a good day to be dedicated to the preservation of life for all animals.