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Fall 2018


Young Friends of The APA Help Connect  Homeless Animals With Loving Homes

The Young Friends of the APA are a group of young professionals who are dedicated to sharing the mission of The APA Adoption Center with the entire St. Louis Community – and they have a lot of fun doing it! The group gives back in numerous ways including:

  • Representing Young Friends of the APA at events (bar crawls, mobile adoptions, sporting events and holiday parties)
  • Volunteering at the APA to care for pets, walk dogs and help facilitate adoptions
  • Providing a temporary home by fostering an animal in need

In 2017, this group raised $25,640 for the animals in our care through Happy Hours, an art fundraiser and by participating in 12 Bars of Charity.

The Young friends host one social event and one volunteer event per quarter in support of The APA Adoption Center.  They most recently represented the APA and volunteered at The Paws for a Cause 5k held at Purina Farms!

Stop by The Young Friends booth at Canine Carnival or join them at 12 Bars of Charity!

For more information about joining, please email or click here.

The APA’s Pet Partner Program Brings Pet Care to Doorsteps

Door by door, assistance is provided to pet owners in North County

Libby, a 7-year-old yorkie, and Cane a 13-year-old pit bull mix, bark when there is a knock at the door. Savannah, the APA’s Outreach Coordinator, is sharing information on porches and in living rooms throughout Libby and Cane’s neighborhood. Most people are skeptical when a stranger is at their front door, but when we share a love for pets, conversations flow with ease.

Libby and Cane’s owner talks lovingly about both dogs. Both dogs appear in great health, but Libby hasn’t been spayed yet. After talking through the benefits of the procedure, Libby is scheduled for her spay. A couple weeks later Savannah picks Libby up for her appointment. During surgery, the surgeon discovers Libby has Pyometra. Pyometra is an infection of the uterus and is a serious and life threatening condition. The preferred treatment is removal of the ovaries and uterus, but Pyometra often goes undetected until it is very serious and sometimes too late. Thankfully, it wasn’t too late for Libby and her family, and spaying saved her life!

The entire 63136 zip code, which includes Castle Point, Bellefontaine Neighbors, Ferguson, Jennings, and Dellwood, is the focus of the APA’s new wellness outreach work. The Pet Partners program offers free spay and neuter surgery to help reduce pet overpopulation, vaccines and microchipping thanks to a grant from PetSmart Charities. The APA also provides supplies such as leashes, collars, doghouses, and flea preventative if needed.

There has been a focus on resource deserts in under-served communities, and this issue affects pet owners as well. Our goal is to keep people and their pets together. It isn’t easy for pet owners when vet care, pet supply stores, grooming, and training isn’t accessible. This is why we’re moving beyond the reactive approach of just helping the animals that come through our doors and taking a  proactive approach to helping those pets that have historically been under the radar.

The APA knows that socioeconomic status doesn’t define how much you love your pet. Likewise, income level doesn’t determine whether or not you deserve the companionship that pets provide. For nearly 100 years the APA has been bringing people and pets together. Pet Partners helps us keep them together, happy, and healthy. As we enter our next century, we’ll continue showing up on doorsteps, coming back, and doing all we can for people and pets in this community.

Pet Partner Program 5 Month Stats (March-August 2018)

  • 66 surgeries completed (86% transported by Savannah)
  • 2 dogs cured of life threatening Pyometra (infected uterus)
  • 1 dog treated for heartworms
  • 169 pets encountered (95 families represented)
  • 124 (contacts, transports, items delivered)
  • 306 animal services (vaccinations, medications, microchipping)

APA Adoption Center Volunteer Vinnie Warner and Angie

“Vinnie Warner is one of the most inspirational people I have every met” says Jen French, the Community Programs Manager at the APA. In the past 10 years Vinnie has volunteered at the APA almost daily, playing an instrumental role in the Community and Education Programs that help to create stronger bonds between humans and animals.

Vinnie and her dog Angie volunteer at the PetReach Animal Assisted Activities that are held in multiple residential facilities, schools and libraries. Each year, over 13,000 individuals are served through this program! We could not do this without the help of volunteers like Vinnie!

When asked about volunteering with Angie, Vinnie said, “Angie spreads JOY wherever she goes. I love to see eyes light up and smiles appear as she approaches individuals with her tail wagging. There is an immediate connection!  Our visits together are as meaningful and gratifying to us as they are to the children and adults who look forward to seeing Angie.”

Thank you Vinnie for your many years of volunteer service!

We’re Gearing up for a Paws-itively Exciting “Back-to-School” Season!

You might be asking yourself, “What? The APA does pet adoptions, why would they be preparing for back to school?” What a great question! We’re getting ready because we believe old (and new) dogs (and cats) can learn new tricks! And, more importantly, they should.

In addition to finding loving, safe homes for nearly 3,500 animals each year and offering critical wellness services for pets, like our low-cost clinic and Head-to-Tails Hope Fund, we also invest in education! We believe that caring for adoptable pets and supporting the families who could (and do) love them often necessitates a little learning.

As the new school year is gearing up, the APA is doing lots of impurrtant things to advance education. Without your support, we wouldn’t be able to deliver these important oppawtunities to deserving pets and people. Your gift makes many of these valuable programs possible:

Pet Enrichment – The APA’s robust pet enrichment program is basically school (and recess) for the pets in our care. Each pet has access to quality toys, a sweet frozen treat on Fridays for our big dogs, one-on-one attention from our staff, and play groups (where cats and dogs can learn valuable social skills and play). Enrichment keeps our adoptable pets stimulated, happy, and healthy while they wait for their forever homes.

PRAISE Training – Everyone likes a good ‘atta boy from time to time and our dogs at the APA are no different. Once a week, a certified dog trainer comes to the APA to work with our adoptable dogs and volunteers, helping teach our dogs new tricks. By providing a little extra training, especially to our older or rowdy pups, we can help get them adopted more easily.

Community Engagement Programs – We believe that pets and people benefit from lifelong learning opportunities, especially at various milestones throughout their lives. For our human friends, we offer valuable community programs that enable them to be better pet owners such as How to Introduce a New Baby to Your Pet, introducing a New Pet into Your Home, or Feeding Your Pet Throughout Their Lifespan, to name a few. Learn about future classes at

Youth Education Programs – Each year the APA reaches more than 1,500 young people through our education initiatives. We are gearing up for the start of a new school year where we will partner with classrooms and youth groups to deliver a comprehensive curriculum which covers anti-bullying, pet care, and humane animal treatment. This education leads to a kinder community for both people and pets.

As we get ready for a busy fall full of learning, we need your help! Your generosity makes possible the critical everyday work of caring for the animals in our adoption center and for educating the community on the value and worth of animals and pets. Your support is appreciated by all of us at the APA, the pets we care for, and the families whose lives are enriched by these programs!

An Imperfect Beauty – Bartholomew’s Story

By Sarah Javier

“No amount of physical beauty will ever be as valuable as a beautiful heart.” – Ustadh Saad Tasleem

Wabi-sabi is an Eastern philosophy most easily described as discovering the hidden beauty in imperfection. When working with animals, we find that almost every pet has outward beauty and an adorable way about them that is hard to resist, however, sometimes we need to look a little bit deeper, to practice wabi-sabi, in order to find the beauty within. That is the case with Bartholomew, or as he is affectionately referred to by our team, Pup-pup.

Pup-pup came to us when his owner’s family, who had more than 20 dogs in the home, realized that they were unable to properly care for him. With help from our transfer volunteers, Pup-pup and 14 other small dogs made their way to the APA.

Upon first look, Pup-pup isn’t what one would define as ‘beautiful.’ His splotchy face is bare in spots and his tongue consistently protrudes from the front of his mouth. His body has several large patches where hair no longer grows, including his tail, which looks long, scaly and rough.  Unfortunately, Pup-pup’s demeanor wasn’t much prettier when we initially met him. It was quickly apparent that during his life he was not very well socialized and was uncomfortable with new people and surroundings. He was fearful of anyone who attempted to touch him and met their attempts at affection with quick snips.

It is possible, and even probable, that many would have given up on Pup-pup, but through the course of working with tens of thousands of animals over the years, we have learned that sometimes the beauty within an animal surfaces over time. Every pet wants to be loved, but allowing oneself to be loved is sometimes hard. At the same time, understanding and patience can do amazing things.

Understanding that Pup-pup needed socialization, one of our team members took Pup-pup in as an office foster. Each day, she gently greeted Pup-pup, carefully removed him from his kennel and let him spend the day in her office. She didn’t push him to interact, but slowly he realized that he was safe and could trust her. As time passed, he began to move to the front of his kennel and greet her in the mornings. Eventually, he even approached her and waited for her to lift him into her lap, which soon after became his favorite place.

Today, Pup-pup was adopted. He is still shy and slow to warm up, but his heart has softened and it is clear that he, like everyone, simply wants to be loved. He isn’t perfect. Outwardly, he looks much the same, although he seems to be just a bit more relaxed (or at least we can tell he is trying). What is important is that he has a good heart, wants to accept the love of others and is willing to give those around him a chance. With a little wabi-sabi, we can see his beautiful heart and the dog he is destined to be. It seems he has also been able to see the beauty within humans. And that is a beautiful thing for everyone.

Upcoming APA Events

Tuesday Trails Children’s Storytime
APA Adoption Center
Click here for details.
Every Tuesday, 10:30 AM – 11:00 AM

Squatters Chasing Tail Happy Hour
Tue, September 25, 5:00 – 7:00 PM
Fallon’s Bar & Grill, 9200 Olive Blvd. Suite 116, Olivette, Missouri 63132
Pet friendly

Canine Carnival + Fast & Furriest 5k/1-mile walk
Sun, September 30, 2018, 10:00 AM – 3:00 PM
Tiles Park
9551 Litzsinger Road, Ladue, Missouri 63124
Purchase carnival tickets and register for the run/walk here.

 Barkin’ for the Blues
Thu, October 25, 7:00 PM vs. Columbus
Enterprise Center
1401 Clark Ave. St. Louis, Missouri 63103
Purchase tickets here. Promo Code:  APAMO

APA Adult Class “Introducing A New Pet into Your Home
Wed, November 14, 2018, 6:00 – 7:00 PM
APA Adoption Center, 1704 Hanley Rd., Brentwood, Missouri 63144
For details and to register for this free event visit the APA Facebook page.

Four Legged Running Half Marathon and 5k
Sun, November 18, 2018, 7:30 AM – 12:00 PM
890 N 10th St, Mascoutah, IL 62258
Register here.

12 Bars of Charity – St. Louis
Sat, December 15, 2018, 2:00 – 6:00 PM
Must be 21+ to participate.
Purchase tickets here.
Sign up in September and $15 goes back to the APA!

New Year for Strays – St. Louis
Fri, January 18, 2019, Doors at 6:30 PM, Trivia starts at 7:30 PM
Must be 21+ to participate.
Registration opens on October 10, 2018
For more information visit