Pets for Life

Pets for Life (PFL) addresses the critical need for accessible and affordable pet care. The Pets for Life program helps animals by empowering the people who care for them.

Pets for Life

Building trusting relationships with people and establishing an ongoing presence in the community is critical to making a real impact. Experience has shown us that when we extend our compassion to human beings as well as animals, we can create long-term and meaningful social change.

Using grants from the Humane Society of the United States and PetSmart Charities, our Pets for Life program is an outreach effort that uses innovative strategies to help pets by helping underserved communities. The targeted communities often do not have access to pet care information, resources or veterinary and related services primarily because of economic, social, linguistic, and cultural barriers.

Our Goal

Our outreach team strives to prevent shelter overpopulation and promote veterinary and pet care (including dog training and reducing suffering and cruelty), thus improving the lives of people and animals in underserved communities. The PFL program is based on the fundamental understanding that where there is human suffering, there is animal suffering. To respond effectively to this, we must reach out to an audience that has the least access to information about animal wellness.

About PFL

Our canvassing team travels door to door within the community, bringing information directly to the public. Through canvassing, Pets For Life has funded more than 1,300 spay/neuter surgeries and helped more than 1,200 pets with vaccinations and vet assistance.

Volunteers work to build trusting relationships with people and their pets, making information and resources affordable and accessible while establishing an ongoing presence in the communities.

By addressing the critical need for accessible, affordable pet care, our program helps animals by empowering the people who care for them. People love their pets, no matter what their socioeconomic circumstances or cultural differences may be!

Some PFL efforts include:

  • Free rabies and microchip clinics
  • Free spay/neuter surgeries to residents of the Union Park neighborhood and surrounding areas, along with residents who live in the 50314 ZIP code.
  • Dog care and training classes
  • Pet and owner resources and pet advice

For more details about the ARL's spay/neuter programs, click here.

"I view Pets for Life as the bridge to social change. For me, it is being proactive rather than reactive. We can either wait to receive animals and accept that it is a part of our culture, or we can go out into the world and show people another way. I believe in social 'nudges' and the long-term impact your volunteer work will have." — Des Moines PFL volunteer