2019 Impact Report

By: | May 6, 2020

2019 was a pet-tacular year for us! Not only did we surpass our 2018 adoption number (3,765), but for the first time in our organization’s history, we surpassed 4,000 adoptions last year!

To read about all of the milestones we hit last year, and how we’re continuing to grow and expand the ways we help people and their pets, view our 2019 Impact Report here.

Want to read Lambchop’s and Toast’s full stories? Click here to read about Lambchop or here to read about Toast.

For more information on what it  means to be a Socially Conscious Shelter click here.

Lambchop’s Story

By: | May 5, 2020

Lambchop had a rough start in life. He arrived at the APA sick with parvo, flea-infested, and suffering from an extremely itchy skin condition called sarcoptic mange that caused him to lose most of his fur. But the APA didn’t give up on Lambchop, and he didn’t give up either!  After receiving the medical care that he needed and lots of love from APA staff and volunteers, Lambchop made a full, albeit slow, recovery and soon found a wonderful new family to give him all of the love and happiness in life that he deserves.

Lambchop fits right in with his new family! They have three sons, so adding a furry BOY to the crew was an easy decision. The family fell in love with Lambchop’s sweet and friendly disposition. Knowing the obstacles he had to overcome before adoption was difficult for the family to comprehend, but they feel so lucky to get to love, play, and care for him as he grows.

Lambchop loves his humans and enjoyed snuggling from day one! His favorite spot in the house is by the fire. He also loves to curl up on a bean bag or his dog bed. His favorite position to sleep is on his back. During his playful times, he enjoys going after his giant stuffed Lambchop or pretending to drink from his Starbucks toy. Any chance he gets, he loves a good car ride, especially if he can sit in the front seat.

As the family has watched Lambchop grow, they have been pleased to see his fur come back thick and soft. They have also learned that he is very smart and easy to train. He knew in one day which door to go to for potty outside! He now knows how to sit, go down, climb, and come. His favorite time of the day? Meal time! When his food bowl is being brought to him, he runs in circles and hops around with excitement.

“We feel so fortunate to have found Lambchop. He is our first family dog, and he has brought us so much joy!”   -The Thompson Family

To make a secure donation to help pets like Lambchop, click here.

Toast’s Story

By: | May 5, 2020

Toast was brought to the APA, after hours, by a kind woman and her young her son who had found him in their yard when he was just a tiny kitten. APA staff were still here for an evening event, so they were able to make sure he got signed in and settled in safely for the night. Toast had a hole in his leg that was full of litter and debris, but APA vet techs were able to clean it out and make sure Toast was comfortable. Had he not been brought to the APA, a deadly infection could have set in, and Toast may not have survived…but Toast received his second chance at the APA!

During his stay at the APA, recovering from his injury, Toast became a favorite at the clinic, helping Kaitlin, the clinic manager, with various duties at her desk, including playing with pen caps and paper clips, playing hide and seek, and watching all of the clinic activity. One could usually find him resting near the printer or computer monitor (where it’s nice and warm) or right on a cozy stack of papers that Kaitlin needed to access.

Toast’s family visited the APA in early September, searching for a kitten to add to their family.  Elliot (age 8) and Theo (age 4) picked Toast (now Oskar) immediately, and they didn’t need to see any others!  According to parents Erin & Brian, it seemed destined that Toast would join their family!  The APA adoption counselor who assisted them mentioned how much Toast had been through, but she thought his resilience and overall tolerance would be the perfect fit for the two young boys. As it turns out, she was right! Toast has been almost comically tolerant in the way he lets Theo carry him around the house like a baby, hugging and squeezing him. His leg injury hasn’t affected him as he has grown. He’s become a strong jumper/runner, galloping around the house and up and down the stairs. According to his family, since his first few days in his new home, he has been nothing short of a perfect little kitty, very sweet and snuggly. Most nights he cuddles with Elliot in bed or snoozes on the couch while the family watches TV.

“He’s our first family pet, and we couldn’t imagine our lives without him!”

Toast loves sleeping in the morning sun on his stairway perch or gazing out the window at the squirrels and trees in the backyard. His favorite activity is batting around his fish taco, as if he is playing kitty soccer trying to score a goal. He’s very fast, darting across the floors in an attempt to surprise toy mice and the boys. He also loves to curl up in the “Kit car” that Theo made for him out of a cardboard box. He’s always ready for a snack and positions himself under the action in the kitchen during meal prep and dinner time, waiting for anything to fall on the floor. He’s always very vocal about his love of fish and meat!

We are so grateful to Toast/Oskar’s new family for adopting him and giving him a second chance at love and life!

To make a secure donation to help pets like Toast, click here.

How to create a Give STL Day Campaign Page for the APA Adoption Center

By: | April 30, 2020

Want to help support the APA on Give STL Day by creating your own fundraising campaign? Keep reading for step by step by instructions or click here to watch a video tutorial.

*Please keep in mind that donations raised through a Facebook fundraiser will not count towards Give STL Day totals.

Step 1: Go to givestlday.org/apa



Step 4: Enter Name, E-Mail & Password. Then click CREATE PROFILE.

Step 5: Customize campaign page.

  • Title
  • URL
  • Summary
  • Upload photo and/or video (video must be from YouTube)
  • Personal appeal
  • Goal
  • Select “Yes” This is for Gives Day



  • Make sure all details are correct
  • Edit your page if you need to

Step 8: Share your campaign page on social media or e-mail!

Donations breakdowns and what donations could cover.

(This is for your reference if you need help creating a goal or explaining to donors what their donations could help at the APA).

A donation of $25 could cover the cost of a round of vaccines for one dog.

A donation of $50 could cover the cost of a spay or neuter surgery.

A donation of $100 could cover the cost of a dental cleaning for one animal.

A donation of $250 could cover the cost of heartworm treatment for one dog.

A donation of $500 could cover the cost to care for a momma cat and her kittens.

Example Text for Social Media & E-Mail

**Don’t forget to insert the link for your campaign page!

“Do I have 10 Facebook friends that can donate $25 to the APA for #GiveSTLDay? Your donations could help cover the cost of heartworm treatment for one dog.”

“Each APA animal receives age appropriate vaccines before they are adopted. ___ (insert animal’s name), one of my favorite (dogs) that I have played with at the APA, is just one of thousands that have received great care at the APA before they found their forever home. A donation of $25 to the APA on @GiveSTLDay would mean so much to me and could help (dogs) like ___ (insert animal’s name).”

“I am looking for 5 friends to donate $10 to the APA for #GiveSTLDay. Your donations could help cover the cost of a spay or neuter surgery for an APA animal.”

“It’s kitten season! If you would like to help a momma cat and her kittens, like ___ (insert cat/kitten names) receive care through the APA, please consider making a donation for #GiveSTLDay. The average cost for their care is $500. Do I have 5 Facebook friends that can spare $100 for the APA on Give STL Day?”

Meet Shayla, one of our amazing transporters!

By: | April 9, 2020

Shayla is one of the many amazing people that we work with through our Transfer Program, which helps needy pets from across the state and country get a chance to be adopted. Last year, with the help of people like Shayla, we were able to transfer in 1,937 pets from other shelters, providing each of them with the second chance they needed. Below, Shayla explains in her own words how she became involved in animal rescue and the kinds of issues that pets in her community face:

“I grew up in the Rolla, MO area and it was apparent from the start that I loved animals more than the average kid. My family took in many pets in need over the years, including dogs that a neighbor abandoned, a momma cat who showed up and had kittens, and a couple of rescue horses. So when I got old enough to drive and happened upon a litter of puppies that had been dumped, it was just natural to bring them home and take care of them.

In 2015, after working 15+ years in retail, I decided it was time for a change. I found out about an animal shelter and dog boarding facility in Houston, MO about 45 minutes from me, began volunteering and was later employed there (at TASTC – The Animal Shelter of Texas County and Bark Plaza Pet Boarding). Sadly, due to financial problems, TASTC closed leaving an enormous void of services for homeless pets in need. Shortly after that, Diana’s Grove Dog Rescue (located in the same county) closed as well. There were zero animal rescues or shelters remaining to serve the largest county in Missouri. During my time at TASTC, I had helped transport the overflow of dogs and puppies in need to the APA. They were the lifeline (and still are) that allowed us to help so many pets in need – as such a rural and low populated area had few adopters and was too far from major cities to be convenient for many people to travel to for adoption. Despite being sparsely populated with people, the rural areas of Texas County, MO and the surrounding areas are very densely populated with unwanted dogs and cats due to so many of the residents living below the poverty line and a lack of animal welfare resources such as low-cost spay and neuter.

Shortly after both organizations closed at the beginning of 2017, a group of concerned people came together to form The Barking Bridge Project, which is the organization that I am part of. Two of the major services that we provide to the communities we serve are low-cost spay/neuter and rescue coordination/transport. The APA has been a vital part of both of those programs – allowing us to help more animals than we otherwise could have. Part of our low-cost spay/neuter program involves working with the Carol House Quick Fix Pet Clinic and the APA and these partnerships have been vital in helping to spay and neuter dogs in those communities who otherwise would not have had the opportunity and would have continued to procreate in the already overpopulated region.

The APA’s transfer program has always been vital to the homeless and unwanted animals in the areas we serve as well. Not including the animals I transported to the APA during my time at TASTC, I have driven more than 1,500 at-risk animals to the APA. They’ve ranged from tiny kittens, cats, rabbits, birds and numerous dogs and puppies. Among all the different circumstances, there were pets whose owners could no longer care for them, animals who were found as strays, those whose time was up in a rural pound and companion animals whose owners moved away and cruelly left them behind. Each one of them was important, every one of them had feelings, and all of them were desperate for a second chance at a good life. The APA provided that and even more for them. The vast majority of the animals we have transported to the APA had never received any veterinary care prior to their arrival. Some suffered from heartworms and the APA provided the life-saving treatment they needed. Many had bullet wounds and infected bite wounds from the harrowing lives they once had. Several were pregnant and sought refuge at the APA and in the homes of so many kind fosters who provided them with the safety and care they needed to nurse their babies under veterinary guidance and away from predators and parasites that they would have otherwise (and many had previously) endured. Dogs with broken limbs were doctored and able to run again, and formerly mistreated animals learned to trust again under the love that the staff and volunteer. Not only did the APA save the lives of hundreds of these animals, but they provided them with quality lives – enriched by humans who love them and spoil them. Many of these pets who once struggled to survive, now live a life of leisure – hopefully forgetting the pasts they were able to escape from. I was asked what my favorite thing about being a transporter was. It’s not the driving all those miles or even seeing so many cute puppies – it’s that after knowing what they’ve been through – I can do my part to help make sure that their tomorrows are so much better than their yesterdays. I am grateful to the APA for being a safe haven to so many pets in need – healing them both physically and emotionally and providing them with loving homes.”

We’re so grateful that we’re able to help pets in the communities where it’s most needed, thanks to wonderful people like Shayla.