Rescue in the Age of Covid

We checked in with a couple of our favorite Phoenix rescues to see how they have been doing over the past year and how the pandemic has affected them. Much like life for most of us, it seems there have been some upsides and some downsides.

Founded in 2006, Poverty’s Pets works to end suffering and overpopulation in low-income and underserved communities with a focus on spay and neutering. When Covid hit, they had to postpone their monthly spay/neuter clinics–which they consider the most effective use of time and resources.

On the upside, they had a record number of volunteers asking to walk our dogs and a lot of adoptions and adoption inquiries.

“The most important thing is spay/neuter,” says founder Kate Sivolella. “There are too many unwanted dogs and cats born into this world. Maricopa County shelter has 40,000 animals come through their shelter each year. They have 300 spaces….do the math. Spay/neuter is the only solution.”

Fortunately, they started hosting the spay/neuter clinics again three months ago. If you would like to help, you can adopt, donate, volunteer to visit dogs or help get the word out to the community about the clinics. Visit

Founded in 2013, Almost There Rescue specializes in saving the lives of large breed, pregnant and nursing dogs and their puppies. When Covid hit, they had many animals in their care that had to be moved into foster homes during the shut down. They used social distancing measures and online forms to find forever homes for all the dogs by June.

“Thankfully, humanity really showed up at the beginning of quarantine and so many animals went into foster homes, the demand for housing for homeless pups went down significantly,” says Director of Communications Annie Verderame.

She adds that another positive was extra time to prepare for the opening of their new location. “Since we had to shut down entirely, we were able to fully immerse ourselves in making sure that our new shelter functioned exactly as we wanted it to.”

If you would like to help, donations of money, food and cleaning supplies are needed. A new volunteer program will be launched in March, so head to to get more info and sign up to receive emails.

“We are always looking for additional fosters to help us with our pups,” says Verderame. “Sometimes we get scared or nervous mamas who need a calm and quiet home to relax in, or newborn puppies with no mama that need dedicated fosters to help by bottle feeding.”

We are so thankful for the work these rescues and the people who run and volunteer for them do on behalf of the animals in our community, showing up like bosses when times are tough!

(Picture: Poverty’s Pets volunteer Amy with Brennan, who is looking for his forever home.)