October 24, 2016

ASPCA Celebrates Three Major Milestones in Los Angeles

This fall marks three groundbreaking milestones for the ASPCA in Los Angeles.

As part of our $25 million commitment to pets in L.A., the ASPCA has collectively provided services to 40,000 animals, including 10,000 relocations, 10,000 Safety Net cases and 20,000 spay/neuter operations. These incredible milestones have made it possible for the ASPCA to keep more pets in homes and out of shelters, transport others to regions where adoption is more likely, and cut down the numbers of kittens and puppies born into an already overcrowded system.

ASPCA President and CEO Matt Bershadker points out that these milestones have a wide impact.

“These programs and accomplishments not only benefit vulnerable animals,” Matt says. “They also support families, enrich communities, and help keep pets and people together—which is critical to the well-being of both.”

Here are a few of these life-saving milestones:

Bebé, an 11-year-old pit bull from La Puente, California, was the 10,000th animal served through the ASPCA’s Safety Net program since the program launched in Los Angeles in 2014.

Bebé’s owner, Adreanna Moreno, adopted Bebé as a puppy and recently discovered bumps on her belly, which turned out to be tumors, some of them ulcerated.  Adreanna couldn’t afford the surgery, so her veterinarian referred her to the ASPCA’s Safety Net team at the Baldwin Park Animal Care Center, where she spoke to Safety Net Manager Miguel Ruelas.  Once we learned about her challenges, we helped cover the cost of Bebé’s surgery. According to the vet, Bebé would have surely died had she not received medical attention.

Bebé is now healthy, and just as importantly, still in her safe and loving home. Not in a shelter. Not on the streets.

The Safety Net team helped keep Bebé together with her loving family.

On September 6, Arcadia, a Chihuahua mix from an L.A. County shelter, was the 10,000th animal loaded onto a vehicle for transport north where adoption would be more likely than in L.A., where shelters are filled with Chihuahuas.

A total of 33 animals—11 dogs and 22 cats—from three L.A. County shelters made the nearly 1,000 mile trip to the Oregon Humane Society in Portland over the next two days.

Left, Arcadia with Lance Hunter. Right, Arcadia is loaded into the transport vehicle. Right, Arcadia

Once in Portland, Arcadia was taken to the Humane Society’s Westside Adoption Center, a small satellite adoption facility run out of a local doggie day care, where she had the chance to romp and play with the other dogs.

A few days later, Arcadia was adopted. She was renamed Princess, and according to a friend of the adoptive family, “It fits her perfectly!” Princess has become friends with her new family’s resident dog and loves car rides, walks, and most of all, snuggling under the covers with her new “mom.”

“We transport so many animals, not only because we love what we do, but because we are saving lives,” says Lance Hunter, the ASPCA’s Director of Shelter Outreach in Los Angeles.  “To us, each animal is more than just a impound number,” Lance explains. “We remember names, stories that a shelter worker may tell us, and will follow up with destination shelters to see how the transport went and how adoptions are going.

“Knowing that an animal we relocated was adopted—wow—it is so rewarding!” Lance exclaims. “The support of our destination shelters and adopters helps us remain focused on creating more lifesaving transports.”  

The ASPCA reached its largest L.A. milestone with the 20,000th spay/neuter operation, which was performed on a three-legged cat named Lamb in early October.

Lamb was the recipient of the 20,000th spay/neuter operation in L.A. 

Lamb was relinquished by her previous owners after she had fallen from a fourth story window and needed to have a hind leg amputated.

Adopted by Mary Coder, a part-time veterinary technician at the APSCA’s Los Angeles Spay/Neuter clinic, Lamb is Mary’s shadow, who follows her wherever she goes.

“There are enough kittens in need of homes,” says Mary,” who is “proud and excited” that Lamb’s surgery was a milestone for the ASPCA. “Our work in L.A. is very much needed.”

“When we opened our stationary clinic at South L.A. over two years ago, we had no idea that we would be making such a massive impact here as well as in Los Angeles County,” says Jennifer Anderson, Director of Operations for Community Medicine in L.A. “Everything we do, every expansion we make is about ending pet overpopulation and keeping these healthy cats and dogs from dying in our shelters. We are excited about the future of Community Medicine in Los Angeles.”

The ASPCA L.A. team celebrates their three major milestones.