March 12, 2020 (Saint Louis, MO) – As Covid-19 concerns spread across the St. Louis region, a local animal shelter is also taking necessary steps to ensure the safety of their staff, volunteers and pets in their care. The most immediate need is temporary foster homes for shelter dogs.  

“Our main focus at this point is on reducing the overall number of animals housed at our shelter. We expect our intake to increase and adoptions to slow down, which is a predictable pattern that occurs any time people feel uncertain. And with people following the social distancing recommendations from the CDC, we are seeing less volunteers coming in to help care for the pets in our shelter,” said Alisha Vianello, Program Director at Gateway Pet Guardians.  

Gateway Pet Guardians is asking for help from the public to host shelter dogs in their homes on a temporary basis through their “Slumber Pawty” program.  This program allows anyone to take a shelter dog temporarily and the organization will provide fosters with crates, food, any supplies needed to care for the dog.

“Our Slumber Pawty program is a year round program that helps us free up kennel space and gives dogs a much needed break from the chaotic shelter environment, but in this case it also allows us to prepare for pressures that COVID-19 is putting on our shelter and pets in our care,” said Vianello.

If you are interested in helping and hosting a shelter dog temporarily, please go to https://www.gatewaypets.org/get-involved/slumber-pawty-program/ and submit your foster application and a member from our Foster Team will be in contact with you right away.

There is currently no concern that animals can contract this illness, but pet owners can be proactive in planning for the worst case scenario by 1)  making plans for their pets in case someone in your home falls ill 2)  stocking up on two extra weeks of pet supplies 3)  identifying a pet sitter who could help out if any point, they need to be hospitalized.  

About Gateway Pet Guardians

Gateway Pet Guardians is a 501(c)3 nonprofit animal shelter whose passionate and dedicated staff and volunteers care for animals on the streets of East St. Louis, Illinois and surrounding areas. Our mission is to end homelessness for animals in the Metro East through rescue, rehabilitation, adoption, community outreach and education.