A Poster Family for Spay/Neuter—and Adoption

Virtually Pets

Puppies, you want? You don’t fix your pets, it’s puppies you’ll get. And kittens, too. And the shelter will also get a good many of them, and even with all the efforts made in Long Beach, some will never get out.

The little guys in the following photos comprise the ideal poster family for fixing your pets and for what happens to a lot of them if they’re not fixed. No wonder our shelters fill as fast as they can be rescued or adopted. Or something not as good.

Story continued below.

With that in mind, meet the Designer family, as their foster mother calls them. Hugo and Grace (for Hugo Boss and Grace Kelly) are a loving couple whose human family didn’t believe in giving them the canine version of “the talk”—a visit to the vet and a couple of cones for wedding rings. And so, four babies were born. And guess where they wound up? It’s technically called owner surrender, but in this case, it’s called dumping.

For this bouncy bunch of terriers, luck waited at the shelter door at Long Beach Animal Care Services. Live Love Pet Care and Animal Rescue Services saw these little dogs and thought, wow. So Live Love pulled them as a family.

“I met the dad before the family,” said the volunteer who stepped up to foster them in her home. “Once I met the entire family, I was in shock how beautiful everyone was! You could just see in their eyes how alert they were and keen and ready for action and love. Immediately, I thought what a smart, stylish, adorable, fun and loving family! Hence, the naming came forth!”

You can meet the Designer Family in person on Friday, December 30 at Unleashed by Petco on Spring Street (see announcement in Mark Your Calendars). Two of the puppies, Tiffany and Gucci, have gone home, but there are two adorable ones left. Here’s the rest of the designer line:

Grace and Hugo, Adult Department

Grace and Hugo

Dad Hugo (right) is named for Hugo Boss. He’s a character and collects followers whenever he walks into a room. He’s playful and a professional at fetch! He also loves squeaky toys and will gladly either show off his prized toy to you or prance around with it to eventually hide it from the puppies so he can return and play with it later.

Hugo may meet other females on his walks, but his heart belongs to Gracie (left). She’s named after Grace Kelly because she carries herself is such a graceful manner with her puppies and with Hugo. Yet give her a little space and she’s zipping through the house and throwing toys up in the air with glee! She’s also a perfect nap partner and will gladly take naps together. Her favorite pastimes involve playing with Hugo and a human.

Both Mom and Dad are so attentive with puppies, but when given a break they go into full play mode with squeaky, happy barks and chases of each other to finish cuddling and falling asleep with either a human on the couch or with each other. They truly have a match made in heaven and the two of them have created the most beautiful and loving family ever.

Kid Sizes

Son Ralph

Ralph Lauren is the oldest of the litter and has set the tone for a smart family of siblings—Foster Mom jokes that they’re all MIT, Stanford, Harvard or Yale bound. She says that Ralph resembles the beauty of Ralph Lauren design and at the same time is as adorable as a Ralph Lauren Teddy Bear. He has already learned how to play fetch—apparently Dad taught him (good parenting, Hugo!). He loves to be with his siblings or parents as much as he is happy to be carried around. He doesn’t want to be alone (Garbo wouldn’t have been attracted), but with one of his littermates or parents, he’s a perfect puppy! He needs to be in a family with other loving dogs—he can certainly go home with one of his family members.


Enzo Ferrari is the third in this lovely litter. He steals everyone’s hearts and has a personality that doesn’t stop. He captures everyone’s attention at the pet adoption events. He’s playful and full of life but is happy to stop and be held at the drop of a dime. Like the Ferrari car, he’s stylish, sporty, fun and a little extravagant—he gives the biggest, most generous kisses of all and anyone! This dog will break hearts of those who meet him in looks and personality. He also needs to be with other dogs—he loves every one of his foster mom’s dogs and was the first in his family to go out of his way to meet everyone! Since his sisters have been adopted, he and Ralph are becoming the best of buds and best brothers too.

And you must know that Live Love saw to it that Gracie and Hugo got “the talk,” cones and all. Together Hugo and Gracie make the perfect companion dogs, and Live Love would love for them to be adopted together.

“Dogs are pack animals,” said Foster Mom. “This means you are part of their pack, but to be fair, they need another dog in the house that can be their companion, too!” And Gracie and Hugo come ready made for it! Whoever adopts them both will, it is hoped, share their story and inspire someone to not repeat this cycle.

The Designer Dogs have their own family album, available here

Long Beach Animal Care Services, located at 7700 East Spring Street at the entrance to El Dorado Park in Long Beach (no charge for parking for shelter visitors), has plenty of other pets in the kennels. They’re all entitled to good lives, every one. 2016 was a rotten year—make 2017 a good one for them.

Zeke 10 year old lab

Zeke, ID#A582180, shown here with his walker, is a super-handsome 10-year-old Labrador retriever who was brought in as a stray and his family never came back for him. Can you imagine how this good, loyal fellow felt? As you can see, Zeke is just the sweetest guy you will meet.


Nalah, ID#A581699, is a sweet girl but is particular about her human friends. She’s 4 years old and seems to be a longhair Chihuahua and terrier mix. She can be a little shy and needs someone special to make her feel comfortable.


Because of his ears, shelter staff call him Mickey Mouse, but his real name is Mr. Magoo,  ID#A581973, and he’s just as goofy, if we want to go all Disney, as the name suggests. Magoo a pit bull terrier, about 4 years old, and is a social butterfly. He walks well on a leash and is very treat motivated. Share a snack with him every day—you’ll love it.

Rudy December 29 Pet of the Week

And the lone cat! Rudy, ID#A583049, is a 5-year-old flame-point Siamese. He’s posted here because he’s a staff favorite and really needs to get out. We know this because the first day, he managed to weasel his way out of his carrier. Every time someone approaches his kennel, he rushes over and starts begging for attention. He needs a real home. Rudy has a heart murmur and may require some veterinary care, but other than that, his heart’s a loving one

You can still get in your donations to these pet-related adoption organizations before the new year. Handy links are provided. 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)


Photo by Michelangeloop

Pet-Communication Event

Thursday, December 29, 7:30PM–9:30PM, Mirage Mediterranean Grill, 539 East Bixby Road, Long Beach

$29 suggested donation

You can communicate clearly with your pets once you know how, says Cheryl Millham, founder of Lake Tahoe Wildlife Care Millham has rehabilitated orphaned and injured wildlife for over 40 years. Tonight, she’ll teach a simple practice for developing clear communication with animals. This opportunity is a must for anyone working with animal rescue and rehabilitation organizations. If you have ever wanted to know the special messages that your pets want to share with you, this is your chance. Plant-based appetizers will be offered, and dinner is available to purchase from the menu. RSVP @Mo's Place II.

 Grace and Hugo

Pet Adoption Event at Unleashed by Petco

Friday, December 30, 1:00PM–3:30PM, 6331 East Spring Street, Long Beach

Adoption fees apply

Meet The Designer Family and other great potential pets. Live Love will be there to accept adoption applications and schedule home checks.

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 to 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!


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 this 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 provides 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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