We're so excited to finish 2019 with such an amazing Los Angeles-based rescue organization. Angel City Pit Bulls has been around for nearly a decade and finds home for more than 200 dogs every year. Learn more about their work below and make sure to donate to this awesome rescue.
Tell us about how Angel City Pit Bulls was started? Is there a personal story behind ACPB’s mission?
ACPB was started in 2010 while the founders were working at the South LA Shelter. It was there where they witnessed firsthand the overpopulation as well as the high euthanasia rates of pit bull type dogs. They knew that they had to help in a bigger way, especially when it came to the dogs that were most at risk.
What are the biggest challenges ACPB faces?
ACPB is 100% volunteer run – absolutely no one gets a salary. Because of this we rely on outside funding as well as our amazing volunteers and fosters to keep our program going. Our biggest challenge are our limits in resources to ease the overcrowding of LA shelters. Donations, volunteers and fosters are crucial to our organization and we are in a constant effort to recruit more people to be involved.
Running a rescue and helping dogs can be tough, both emotionally and physically. Can you share a tough experience or trying moment for the rescue, and what you did to overcome it?
Now that we’ve expanded our “Angels Program”, where we take in hospice dogs, it’s been very tough to say goodbye to those dogs. There are times when we get them from the shelter and they are in such bad condition that we think they have only a small time left. Through a lot of comfort and love from our volunteers and fosters as well as the amazing skill and care of our partner vet, Dr. Zoe Ramagnano at SNPLA, most of the time the expected life spans of our hospice dogs get quite longer, which leaves even more time to get attached.
We’ve found that the best way to deal with this is to include any volunteer who would like to be a part of the end of life process for our hospice dogs. This includes making decisions on their behalf and being there to comfort the dogs when the time comes. We also do things to celebrate the dogs before they leave us, most recently throwing a backyard barbecue for our beloved hospice dog, Buddy, so that he can really know how loved he is. This also gives our volunteers an nice opportunity to say goodbye.
Do you have a network of fosters in the LA area that help care for the dogs or do the dogs stay in a facility?
While our foster program is still the backbone of ACPB, having more than 60 dogs in foster care on a regular basis, as of March 2018 we were lucky enough to be gifted a portion of the previously shuttered South LA shelter. This facility has enabled us to have a safe space for our dogs to be evaluated and decompress after leaving the shelter before we place them into a proper foster home.
This facility, along with our partners at the Spay and Neuter Project who are also housed there, has also allowed us to take more medical cases, dogs who need larger procedures that would be too great for the LA City Shelters to fund. We have also been able to start an ACPB Angels program, where we take in the elderly and dying animals that have been left at the shelter and give them the best rest-of-life experience we possibly can.
Where does your primary financial support come from?
We depend on individual donations. We do fundraising events throughout the year, our biggest one being the LA Marathon team who raises over $100k every year to support ACPB. They are incredible!
How many dogs on average do you place in their forever homes annually?
We generally place around 200. In 2018 we placed 225 dogs. We are on par to do that many in 2019 as well!
For those reading this, if they want to help fight the good fight, what can they do to help?
Donate, of course, but we would also LOVE you to be involved. We have many different ways to volunteer that will fit into any schedule and lifestyle. The team of volunteers at ACPB are a fun and caring group and you will find like minded friends who are there to just help the dogs. We also always need fosters – so if you need a blocky headed goofball in your life please let us know. We have a few that are waiting for you!
What are the plans for the future of Angel City?
Pretty simple. Rescue as many dogs as possible!
If you're interested in helping Angel City Pit Bulls, donate today or like them on Facebook and follow them on Instagram.