This Holiday—Empty a Cage and Fill a Heart

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Virtually Pets

I can’t say this enough—pets are not presents. They’re not inanimate objects that you can return to the seller if they get too much for you or if the recipients didn’t want one or just doesn’t like the one they got. Or if they don’t match the curtains. The shelters and rescues are full of these “gift exchanges,” and some of the ones in the shelter don’t make it out, despite every effort that’s made.

But there are still people who are bound and determined to present someone with a puppy or a kitten under the tree—hopefully not giftwrapped—or in a stocking. If that’s the case, hand him or her this coupon and insist that they adopt them. Don’t go to a pet store—just Google “pet stores puppy mills” and you’ll understand. Instead, visit our shelter or one of the genuinely loving rescues listed below with your loved one, buddy or other close person, and give them the coupon below or email a copy to them with the promise of  needs a new friend, gift this coupon with a promise of paying the shelter fee. Then, let the pet and the person

find each other.

Pets aren’t presents—you’re a gift to them, and vice versa.

pet coupon V1reduced size

Graphic by Michelle Manion

Shelters and rescues have puppies and kittens, and in the spirit of the season, we’ll concentrate on the need rather than the cause, to paraphrase a proverb. But there are also adult dogs and cats who get overlooked for something “cuter.” Children get older, and they’ll get older, too, to paraphrase a rock icon.

These guys here got older. Some of them have been at our shelter for a long time, and they need to go home. Can you deliver? Make your first stop Long Beach Animal Care Services (ACS), 7700 East Spring Street, Long Beach, at the entrance to El Dorado Park (no parking charge for shelter visitors).

Have a wonderful holiday, and we hope that you’ll make it wonderful for a dog or a cat. Or both. Fa-la-la-la-arf and myow-wow-purr!

All images below courtesy of ACS.


Amor is interested in being your holiday love, just like her name! She’s a lover indeed! The heart-shape spot she has on her side penetrates all the way to her own heart. She’s on the young side—a 4-year-old pittie—and has lots of energy. She’s been with ACS since September. Please take her home to have Valentine’s Day with you! Ask for ID#A578490.

Tippy Toes

Tippy Toes is currently with a foster (pictured with him above) because he’s recovering from a pain-alleviation surgery. When he recovers, he’ll be all ready to play with you. He’s about three years old and a lovely metallic gray pit bull terrier. He’s also been at ACS since September. Ask for ID#A578340.


Do you have hiking plans? Do you like to charge around the town? So does Lenny. Lenny’s high energy and would like to go home with someone who can channel that energy through exercise and education about walking gently on a leash. Lenny’s a year-old pittie and can smile big! Ask for ID#A581362.


What’s that sound? Is it muted jingle bells? Nope—it’s Orbit’s purr! This little girl has been at ACS since October and needs to switch orbits to someone’s heart. She’s a year-old brown domestic shorthair tabby who’s affectionate and curious. She’d be a great “starter cat” for someone who wants to see what it’s like to live with one. Ask for ID#A581086.


Mama, a beautiful 2-year-old domestic medium-hair tortie, was left at the shelter by her owner, in October. She’s shy but quite friendly when she warms up, and looks as if she could warm up your hands and feet! She displays none of that tortie attitude! Ask for ID#A580774.


The following links to shelters and rescues are excellent places to start your search. If you have any change jingling in your pockets, they gladly accept donations. Please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or post in the comments section any other legitimate rescues that may have been left out:

Long Beach Animal Care Services (ACS)


Helen Sanders CatPAWS

Live Love Pet Care and Animal Rescue

Kitty Katchers

The Little Lion Foundation

Zoey’s Place Rescue

West Coast Animal Rescue (WeCare)

Jellicle Cats Rescue Foundation

Long Beach Spay & Neuter Foundation

Making Biscuits Cat Rescue

Fix Long Beach isn’t a rescue organization, but the hundreds of cats and dogs spayed and neutered there have brought down shelter euthanasia numbers and help lower the number of unwanted animals. They take donations, too! Proud disclaimer: I’m an equally proud volunteer.

Mark Your Calendars (the People Way)

Cat Adoption Center

Pet Adoption Event at PFE

Saturday, January 7, 11:00AM–3:00PM, Pet Food Express, 4220 Long Beach Boulevard, Long Beach

Adoption fees apply

Find your new best friend and everything that he or she could ever want or need, in one place. Long Beach Animal Care Services (ACS) and other rescues will be bringing some wonderful dogs ready to go home with their new people. Everything is high quality at Pet Food Express, and that includes the adoptive pets! Check out the Cat Adoption Center, featuring fine felines from Long Beach Animal Care Services and Stray Cat Alliance.

Fix Long Beach logoHope for Paws

Fix Long Beach Free Spay/Neuter Clinic

Saturday, January 14, 7:30AM–4:00PM, Houghton Park, 6500 Atlantic Avenue (near Jordan High), Long Beach

Free to qualifying residents; free microchips; low-cost shots ($10 each); $10 flea med doses

The grassroots free spay/neuter organization Fix Long Beach invites you to make an appointment for your unfixed dog, or get vouchers for free procedures for your dog or cat! These clinics are generously sponsored through Hope for Paws and Eldad Hagar.

Visit this link for qualifications and an application for your appointment. There is also a donation button to help Fix Long Beach continue their efforts. Click the organization’s Amazon Wish List link donate items, or bring them to the event if you find a better deal!

Let’s continue to help make Long Beach no kill, one pet at a time!


1 Too Many logo FOR EVERYDAY USE

Long Beach Animal Care Services (ACS) Information for Low-Cost Vaccinations and Spay/Neuter Clinics

7700 East Spring Street at entrance to El Dorado Park (no fee for shelter visitors), Long Beach

Prices vary

Vouchers that take a big bite, so to speak, out of the cost of spay/neuter procedures are available at ACS during their public hours. Visit this link for information on clinics that accept the vouchers and for other spay/neuter assistance.

For low-cost vaccines, visit this link Note that pet owners must be 18 years or older, all pets must be on leashes or in carriers, and only healthy and non-pregnant animals will be vaccinated. Please bring prior vaccination information with you to the clinic. Vaccination and microchip services are provided for pets residing in any city. Licensing is provided for residents within our jurisdiction at Saturday clinics; please bring your renewal notice and rabies certificate with you. 


Live Love Pet Care: Pay What You Wish for the Holidays

(213) 282-PAWS, through December 31

Cost: Entirely up to you, for the first visit

The holidays are here, and care for your pets is one thing you can check off your wish list! Now through New Year’s Eve, book your first in-home pet care service (dog walking, pet sitting or Overnight) with Live Love Pet Care, and after the visit, pay what you wish!


West Coast Animal Rescue (WeCARE) Online Fund-Raiser

Ongoing, Through Lynch Creek Farm

Prices vary; donations also welcome

Support West Coast Animal Rescue by purchasing holiday products from this family-owned farm. The beautiful products are fresh, no trees are killed to make the wreaths, shipping is free, and you can pick your shipping date. So why support big box stores? Support a small rescue which does great things. Information available here


Pilates X Donation Drive for spcaLA

Through January 1, 2017, Pilates X Studio, 5555 East Stearns Street, #108, Long Beach

In-Kind Donation

In an effort to help homeless animals, Pilates X is requesting dry and wet pet food for kittens, cats, puppies and dogs; non-clumping cat litter; durable toys; treats; and new or gently used towels and blankets. All donations will help the animals housed at spcaLA.


Registration for Team spcaLA for the LA Marathon

Saturday, March 18, 5k; Sunday, March 19, Marathon; Dodger’s Stadium, 1000 Elysian Park Avenue, Los Angeles

5k, $40; Marathon, $175

Join Team spcaLA for the LA Marathon or LA Big 5K and help stop animal cruelty with each step.Visit link for details


BARK Therapy Dogs Library Appearances

Various area libraries (Long Beach events generally held on Saturdays)

Free event

Dogs love unconditionally. They don’t judge or criticize. And they love a good story. Bring your children to the library to read to these lovely therapy dogs, and watch their confidence in their reading ability grow.

BARK (Beach Animals Reading with Kids) is an all-volunteer group dedicated to increasing children’s reading skills as well as interacting with pets. Check the calendar page on the group’s website, and find out more about this terrific organization.

Free Pet Food Distributions

Food for Pets in Need

Food for Pets in Need pet food to senior, homeless, low-income and homebound residents in Long Beach who otherwise may not be able to afford adequate food to take proper care of their pets. 

Pet food bank

The Pet Food Bank is sponsored by Christian Outreach in Action See flyer for details.

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