Our community outreach volunteers were out in full force this weekend, delivering supplies and resources to pet owners in the Metro East. We met dozens of families, but there is one in particular that stood out, because it represents the importance of the work we do within the community. We’d like to share this story.


We met a lovely woman named Carolee who had found a puppy as a stray four weeks ago. She named her Tina. She was feeding her and provided her a home, but asked us to take the puppy. She was worried that she couldn’t provide her with the basic necessities to keep her healthy.

We watched her play with the puppy. The puppy watched her every move. She said her grandkids taught her “sit” and “down,” and talked about how they play in the yard together. It was obvious to us that this dog was home. We looked at her and asked, “Are you sure you don’t want to keep her?”

We told her about our free spay/neuter program. She could get the puppy fixed, all of her vaccinations, and a microchip for free. Then, every year she could visit us at our Jones Park vaccination clinic to get her annual shots. And she’d qualify for the Bi-State Pet Food Pantry to receive free pet food once a month.

She was so happy to hear this, and of course wanted to keep her! We gave her a collar and leash and 3 months of Frontline. We also helped her clip her toenails so she wouldn’t scratch the grandkids when playing.

Tina and her mom, Carolee

The work Gateway Pet Guardians does in the community saves lives. Tina didn’t need ‘rescued.’ She had a home, a family, and little kids that loved her dearly. She’s a spunky little puppy, and she will teach her kids empathy, compassion, and love. With just a few supplies and access to resources, we were able to keep Tina in her loving home and out of the shelter system.

We are encouraged when we meet amazing families like Carolee who love and adore their pets, and are happy to be able to help by providing access to veterinary services and pet supplies. But we can’t do it alone. If you’d like to contribute to our Community Outreach Program, visit www.gatewaypets.com/community-programs. Learn more about this important work, and consider donating today. Your donation could make a difference and keep a family whole.

Tina getting her nails clipped by a volunteer