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How does ARF help animals?

ARF helps cats, dogs and other companion animals through a variety of programs, including adoption, emergency veterinary assistance, a national resource center, dog training and other services. These programs fulfill ARF's mission by ensuring the humane treatment of companion animals, and bringing people and animals together to enrich each other's lives. ARF animals all receive medical care, socialization and love, and all are spayed or neutered prior to adoption. ARF provides support in the form of training, advice, etc., to all adopters throughout their animal's lifetime.


How is ARF different from County Animal Services?

ARF is a private, non-profit, animal welfare organization, dependent on donations. Animal services is a county agency, funded by taxpayer dollars, which primarily meets a county's animal control needs. ARF and local animal services work together to save as many lives as possible. At ARF, healthy and loving animals are never put to death to make room for incoming animals. At ARF, as new homes are found for shelter guests, staff rescues more animals who have run out of time at public shelters.


Is ARF a No Kill organization?

ARF strives to find homes for adoptable dogs and cats — healthy and treatable animals, free of serious behavior problems. Additionally, ARF helps hundreds of companion animals requiring treatable medical or behavioral issues prior to being placed for adoption. Euthanasia is reserved only for unhealthy and untreatable animals.

For additional information of definitions of Maddie's Fund Health & Behavior Categories for Shelter Animals.


Why can't ARF take in more animals from the people who call to ask for help?

ARF receives more than 100 calls per day, and many of these calls are from people trying to place dogs and cats. Every caller is provided with resources and suggestions. ARF takes in as many dogs and cats as financially able through the generosity of ARF supporters. ARF offers available space to loving animals who have run out of time and would otherwise be put to death at public shelters if they are not rescued.


Why is ARF particular about who adopts an animal, if so many animals need a home?

ARF is committed to placing animals with caring and responsible adopters. Animals count on ARF to do so, and ARF makes a financial and emotional commitment to every animal which comes through ARF's doors. ARF's objective is to place animals with adopters who understand and accept that they are making a lifetime commitment to the animal.


What is People Connect?

People Connect programs promote and foster interaction between people and companion animals. From humane education to animal assisted activity, People Connect works to cultivate the human-animal bond.

By training the next generation to respect and care for animals we are building a better future. ARF's humane education program offers a variety of educational courses for the classroom setting or in the ARF Learning Center. The ARF Teen Training program and Community Service days for teens foster responsibility, maturity, empathy and community involvement for youth volunteers. During the summer months Camp ARF offers a fun animal-centered experience for kids of all ages.

ARF's therapy animal team provides animal assisted activities for patients in hospitals, skilled nursing facilities and more. ARF's All Ears Reading® utilizes trained pet teams to create a relaxed; nurturing reading environment that encourages improvement in your child's reading skills. Interacting with animals on ARF's Pet Hug Pack therapy team, children listen to animal-related stories or read aloud, according to their ability.


What is ARF's facility?

ARF's 37,700-square-foot headquarters in Walnut Creek opened in June 2003 and has become a community center where ARF is able to rescue, treat and adopt more animals who would otherwise have been put to death. Dogs and cats live in cozy, glass-enclosed condominiums, where they are free to frolic with each other and meet potential adopters in Maddie's Animal Care Center. The Nestle Purina Dog Training Pavilion is the home of ARF U and the site for training classes at all levels open to ARF adopters and the public. The state-of-the-art Lynn and Dolores McCoskey Spay/Neuter Clinic helps combat pet overpopulation by altering animals.

The People Connect Wing includes a Learning Center, Presentation Room, and Classroom, all of which help educate and involve thousands of community members and help ARF research, develop and implement more innovative programs bringing the healing touch of animals to people.

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