Grand Opening March 16th Clancy’s Closet & Pet Support Space office

DDR supporters, you are personally invited to attend the GRAND OPENING of Clancy’s Closet and Pet Support Space.

Named in order to honor one of the greatest DDR dogs that ever lived, Big Papa Clancy. The store is stocked with pet supplies that have been donated to us so that we can share them with the families with pets that we support.  Take what you need, donate what you can, support spay and neuter and veterinary care for low income families with pets.

Clancy the therapy dog

Clancy’s Closet will also be a place where high school students who live in our community can work while getting credit for community service hours.  We also plan to give job training to some of our clients who want to re-enter the workforce, but don’t have recent work experience.  Everyone is welcome to stop by and shop, donating whatever they can afford. However, our main goal is to serve our people with pets who are transitioning into permanent housing.  Rather than have all of our supplies stored in plastic tubs, at various locations, or stand on a street corner passing out supplies once a month, everyone can come in and shop in a pet shop type experience.

Happy Customer!

Collars, leashes, harnesses for Cats and Dogs

Donate $20 and get a DDR coffee mug

Lots and LOTS of t-shirts, dresses, sweaters and coats for every size dog

Clancy’s Closet LOVES cats and have a variety of toys and supplies for kitties

Whether you donate $1, $10, $100, or even $1000, you are supporting our mission to serve low income people with pets, especially the homeless, undocumented, at-risk and persons with mental and developmental disabilities. YOUR support makes it possible for us to continue to provide resources and support to individuals and families with pets transitioning from crisis and isolation to stability and independence.


Thursday March 16th from 6-9:00PM

3925 Tweedy Blvd  South Gate 90280

Parking behind our store

Shelter Intervention

7 year old “Bubba’s” dad, who is homeless, brought him to the South LA Shelter, pleading for help after they both got locked into an abandoned building where they were squatting.  Out of desperation they were living there because City of LA workers towed away his car where they had been living.  He lost his car, and all of his personal belongings.  In a state of panic, not wanting to have Bubba taken from him too, he lifted Bubba up and over a locked fence.  In doing this, Bubba’s stomach was cut open, badly. Three days later, Bubba could no longer walk, he stopped eating. With no transportation, no money, dad walked around all day, begged people to help him save Bubba. Then he remembered an old friend’s number who is a dog lover, and got in contact with her, asking for ride to the South LA shelter.  Our counselors were on site, set up at a table in front of the receiving area at the South LA Shelter, when they saw Bubba and his dad.  Immediately, they took action by getting an immediate veterinary appointment.  Due to the extent of his injuries, and the infection that had set into the wound, the decision was made by his dad per our veterinarian’s suggestion, to humanely euthanize Bubba.  Humane euthanasia for pets like Bubba is something that we sponsor on a weekly basis.  Keeping more senior pets and terminally ill pets with their low income families until the end of their life instead of being surrendered to the shelter due to financial hardship, and because there is no other option, is to be of the highest service to the community


Here is a what our counselor Amanda wrote in a text,

“This case really affected me and Yessi.  We see a lot of horrible cases, but this one just really messed us up. I literally had to go to the restroom and cry afterwards.  Just thinking about the pain and agony that poor dog went through for three days.” 

Bubba’s dad did the best he could with what he had available to him as a resource.  For many of our clients, the shelter is their only known resource for an emergency.  The mental toll that this takes on our counselors and the shelter staff is immense. In fact, there was a period of time when counselors Amanda and Yesenia did not work at the shelter as counselors because we all needed to take a break for our collective mental health.  But, once you seen the suffering, the families who cannot afford veterinary care, and the range of emotions they display from rage to shame to complete and utter despair, it’s impossible to not be directly involved.  Our counselors are at the South LA shelter every Tuesday and Thursday, at our Pet Suppor Space office by appointment Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and counselors/volunteers are available by phone/text seven days a week to assist any low income […]

Cornbread the Legend

This is Cornbread, a senior dog who was likely attacked by other dogs, while he roamed the streets of our Alameda Project area.  Thanks to the kindness of a family who had attended one of our vaccination clinics, live in the area, Amanda our program manager was called, asking for help.  The message for help went like this, ” There is a dog who has been laying in front of my house for four days.  He looks really bad, looks like he was hit by a car, can’t walk.”  Amanda’s first thought was “Why did you wait to call for four days?” Then, thinking about how sometimes families who live in the neighborhoods that we serve are more accustomed to seeing animals and people suffer.  This area has hundreds of homeless people living in trailers, cars, and tents, all trying to survive. Reflecting on the reality of the situation, she was grateful that the family did make the call for help.  More than likely, she thought, this is going to be a pick up for a humane euthanasia.  When she got him into her car, she took the photo of him covered in dried blood, bite wounds, too weak to hold up his head.

Rescued from the street

Because of the holidays, our DDR kennel was full, and all of the boarding facilities that we use were also full. The only place for him to go was the South LA Shelter.  Not the best option, but the only option we had that day.  Thankfully, Dr. Rameriz at Los Angeles Veterinary Clinic offered to give him an exam, bloodwork, and care for his wounds, while he boarded him a couple days.  This gave us a little time to figured out a plan.

Leaving the shelter to go to LA Veterinary Center

We named him “Cornbread” after the artist Cornbread the Legend.  Next, we had a dedicated and experienced foster, who offered to keep him safe at her home until we had some space at our kennel.  After leaving the animal hospital, he went to Noemi’s home, where he had his first bath, his first walk, and he began to understand that he was safe.  But it wasn’t easy, barking non stop for almost two days, not understanding where he was.  Living in a home was a huge adjustment during those first 72 hours.

Wearing a sweater, walking through the neighborhood

Bath time

Noemi reassuring Cornbread he is safe

We don’t know much about Cornbread other than at some point in his life someone loved him because he walks well on leash, will nudge for affection, enjoys being touched and petted.  How […]


Last month, DDR counselors were on site at the South LA Shelter when a young man approached their table.  He had received a notice to “get rid of his dogs” or he would be evicted after living there with the dogs for ten years.  Counselor Amanda educated him about his rights as renter, and immediately connected him with H.E.A.R.T.LA attorney Dianne Prado.  Dianne was able to write a letter of accommodation for him, which would make it illegal for the landlord to evict him because of the dogs.

Thinking that everything was settled, our client, who we will refer to as “C” was about to find out that while he was at work, someone purposely let the dogs out of the yard, and they were gone.  “C” called Amanda distraught, explaining that the dogs were no where to be found.  He posted flyers, drove around looking for them for days.  Amanda was able to post the dogs on social media platforms, hoping that someone would recognize the dogs.

Five days later, someone on Pawboost saw Biggie at the shelter.  “C” went to the shelter, confirming that it was Biggie! There were so many tears of joy mixed with sadness.  Happy that he found Biggie but sad that his second dog was still missing.  We learned that the dogs were the only connection to his mother who recently died of cancer. Before she died, he promised his mom that he would always take good care of her dogs.  Because “C” was confident that someone had intentionally released the dogs, knowing that he and the dogs were not wanted there, he decided that the safest place for Biggie was in boarding while he searched for a new place to live.  “C” has not given up hope in finding his other dog.

Now the real work started, finding a pet friendly rental for around $1500 per month.  With the help of a volunteer Carol, who is a real estate agent, he was able to find an apartment that he could afford that would allow Biggie. The process of finding this apartment was like finding a needle in a haystack. After a applying for many apartments, his application was approved, and he could move in immediately. But then there was  the first, last months rent + a pet deposit.  He had enough money to pay his rent, but had no savings.

Working full time, and doing a side Hussle on the weekend to earn extra money, he calculated that he would not be able to save up an extra $2000 to cover his move in expenses.  We decided to pay his move in expenses up front for him.  Volunteer Carol donated the amount to cover the pet deposit.  “C’ was so grateful that DDR paid for Biggie’s shelter fees, all his veterinary care, boarding, and helped him to avoid becoming homeless.

November 29th is Giving Tuesday, and if you agree with our mission to […]

1,811 Pets Assisted in 3rd Quarter

During the months of July, August and September, Downtown Dog Rescue provided assistance, services, and support for 1,811 family pets ( 1199 dogs and 612 cats)   Like most months, the majority of the requests for assistance involve DDR paying for a percentage to paying for 100% of veterinary care.  A total of 1052 pets received care ranging from vaccinations to chronic medical conditions, to life saving care. Spay and Neuter appointments are difficult to almost impossible to get for most of our families with pets.

In the third quarter, we provided 443 spay and neuter surgeries for cats and dogs.  Each month, we have at least two, and sometimes three mobile clinic days, where the cost to spay/neuter + vaccinate + microchip ranges from a cost of free to a copay of $20-$40.  For most of the surgeries, DDR is paying the majority of the cost to get more pets spayed and neutered.  In August, we began offering s/n services to the community of Huntington Park, and we are committed to go back every other month with a mobile clinic, in partnership with the Huntington Park Police Department.

DDR paying for City of Los Angeles pet redemptions is way down, we only paid for a total of 9 pet redemptions to send pets back home, and out of the shelter.  LAAS is now covering the cost of pet redemptions when someone is low income/homeless and can not afford to redeem their dog or cat from the shelter.

17 humane euthanasia services were provided for dogs that were brought to the South LA Shelter to be surrendered because their families could not afford to humanely euthanize their senior/terminally ill pet. Rather than surrendering to the shelter where they would likely sit in a cage suffering, DDR paid for the services so that the families could stay with their pet until the end of their life, surrounded by love and compassion. Families can call or text us for immediate support.

288 families with pets received a monthly supply of cat or dog food.  These are all clients who have registered in our program, have spayed/neutered their pets, and rely on DDR to feed their pets.  This does not include the hundreds of pounds of food that we pass out on a weekly basis to people with pets who are living on the street, in their vehicles, in trailers.  Often, when we meet them, they have no resources for their pet, and have lost connection to resources for themselves as well.

We had three cases of a notice to comply, the reason for being cited was lack of shelter or lack of containment.  In these cases, we provide a dog house, repair a simple fence or gate fix, while making sure that the pets in the household get spayed and neutered.  If the families want to join our maintenance program, and receive ongoing assistance, we offer that as well.

Counselors Amanda and Yesenia […]

SAVE THE DATE! October 30th

Join us for the return of our Bark for Life Fundraiser Event!

Save the date, October 30th from 10am to 3pm, Studio 4 Salon in Newport Beach, will be hosting a Halloween Costume fundraising event for Downtown Dog Rescue.  100% of the donations will go directly to DDR to support our work in the community, increasing access to spay and neuter, and rescuing overlooked dogs for City and County shelters.  Adoptable DDR dogs will be at the event, all dressed up, and ready to go to their forever homes.  Come out and spend a special day with all of the DDR volunteers and supporters, as we raise funds to support our work in 2023! We look forward to seeing you and your dog at the event!


Family Crisis

10 year old Shatto’s person, an elderly and disabled woman living on a fixed income, was feeling desperate and overwhelmed when she spoke to counselor Amanda.  She knew that she would not be able to afford an exam, tests, and treatment for whatever was making her dog sick.  Hoping Shatto would get better with rest, three weeks went by, but Shatto became weaker, losing so much weight, she looked like she might die.  Amanda listened, and assured her that she could help, but first, she would need to apply for a new program that DDR is part of called  AlignCare  Because she was receiving government benefits, and was means tested as living at our below the poverty line, she immediately qualified for this incredible benefit.

Shatto was so sick, a same day appointment was scheduled at Los Angeles Veterinary Center. Dr. Ramirez diagnosed her as having pyometra.  She needed an emergency surgery but not before she had a blood transfusion.  The following day, still weak, but stable enough to have surgery, the quote for all the care and hospitalization came to $1,913.32 which is a discounted rate that AlignCare veterinarians agree to as being part of the program.  AlignCare pays 80%, leaving Shatto’s family to pay $382.66, (20% of the quote).  Grateful for all the support, grateful that Shatto’s life would be saved, she agreed to pay the 20%.  In cases where the person cannot pay all or even any of the 20% co-pay, DDR pays on their behalf so that no pet ever suffers and or dies because the family could not come up with their co-pay.

This was a complicated and intense case, therefore Amanda had a lot of contact with Shatto’s family, and learned that she was never spayed, even though she had been required by Animal Control to get this done.  Apparently, some months back, there was a horrible situation where the police responded to a call for help at Shatto’s home. In the excitement and stress of the situation, she was accidentally shot by an officer.  When she had surgery to remove the bullet, she could not be spayed because she almost died.  Months later, for whatever reason, her family never followed through.  A lack of transportation, a lack of resources, and or family dynamics, potentially all played a part in getting Shatto to the point to where she was almost dead, again.

As counselors, our role is not to judge, or dwell on the mistakes of the past.  We get the facts, and try our best to understand the needs of each client and their pet(s).  When it came time for Shatto to leave the hospital, staying neutral and not judging became a real challenge for Amanda, as it would for any counselors who thought that a dog had been abandoned at the hospital.  Calling repeatedly, no answer, no response to texts, the veterinarian also tried reaching out to see when […]


Nina was brought to the South LA Shelter by a young man, in his early twenties, when both of our SIP counselors, Amanda and Yesenia, were on site. He was upset, felt overwhelmed, and really didn’t want to surrender his 7 month old puppy, who had been hit by a car. When she was hit, he did everything he could to save her, including taking her to the emergency hospital where Nina received an unsuccessful orthopedic surgery. He did end up taking her home, only to bring her back to the shelter a week later, but instead of surrendering her to the shelter, he surrendered Nina to DDR.

It would be easy to post sad or graphic photos of Nina, before and after her leg amputation in order to fundraise. We believe that by doing so, we would be silently promoting that she was neglected by someone who did not follow through with all of her necessary care that resulted in her losing her hind leg, but that does not tell the truth.

The truth is that she was loved, he had rescued her from a “bad situation” four months prior. He lived with his family in a second floor apartment, and worked full time. He tried, and he sincerely wanted the best for Nina, but his best wasn’t enough. Not during this point in his life. Judging would be easy to do, but attempting to understand the perspective of the young man, who tried his best is important. We have all fallen, failed, regretted an action, wished we could have done better.


Accepting this fact was difficult for him, as it was for our counselor Amanda, who had been his main point of contact. When Nina was picked up at the shelter a week later, he was crying, it was emotional. Reality was her leg was dead and needed to be removed immediately. As a counselor, you may intellectually understand that you are making a good decision, but watching someone experiencing a loss is still painful. We even question what’s best for the pet, never assuming that just because we are a rescue organization, we are superior and all know what’s best for a puppy like Nina.

How we as individuals experience cases like this often involves how closely we identify with the client, and the experience that the client is going through with their pet. If we have experienced a similar loss and have been traumatized, it’s inevitable that our understanding of a case can be very personal.

“Trauma is the invisible force that shapes our lives. It shapes the way we live, the way we love and the way we make sense of the world. It is the root of our deepest wounds.” Dr. Gabor Maté

Thanks to a wonderful medical foster, Noemi, Nina […]

Translate »