Edit ModuleShow Tags

County of San Diego Department of Animal Services




In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, hundreds of thousands of people were left homeless by the storm’s destruction. But Gulf Coast residents weren’t Mother Nature’s only victims—their four-legged friends were also left without shelter and, in many cases, without their masters. As evacuees were displaced across the country, so were their pets. Thanks to organizations like the County of San Diego Department of Animal Services (DAS), more than 100 dogs are currently receiving care in San Diego, awaiting reunions with their owners.

A government agency, the San Diego DAS operates three shelters in San Diego County: one in Bonita, one in Carlsbad and a third, the Kroc-Copley Animal Shelter, on the Campus for Animal Care in Linda Vista. Each year, all three shelters take in 27,000 animals: dogs, cats, horses, reptiles. “You name it, it’s been here,” says Dawn Danielson, DAS director. “We are the lead agency in San Diego for animal rescue after any disaster.”

In fact, when San Diego suffered the devastating wildfires in 2003, the DAS worked with the San Diego Humane Society and SPCA to rescue more than 3,000 animals. This year, the two organizations were part of a coalition of seven shelters that rescued 102 dogs from the Gulf Coast region, performing medical triage and serving as a temporary home for the displaced pets.

In addition to rescue, sheltering and adoption services, the DAS also provides microchipping, licensing, spaying, neutering and animal-related law enforcement.

“Our officers enforce state regulatory and cruelty laws, protecting people from dangerous animals and protecting animals from dangerous people,” Danielson adds.

The Kroc-Copley Animal Shelter is the largest of the three DAS shelters, funded, in part, by a $2 million donation from Joan Kroc and a $2 million donation from Helen Copley. Constructed three years ago, the shelter shares its campus with the San Diego Humane Society and SPCA, an organization Danielson calls a great complement to the DAS. While the Humane Society does public education and adoption services, the DAS is the only agency allowed to take in stray animals. Partnerships with other animal organizations, such as FOCAS and the San Diego Veterinary Medicine Association, aid the DAS in vaccinating, treating and placing its needy animals. Volunteers at the shelter provide cleaning, training and exercise for the pets, as well as to help match people with the right dog or cat—a relationship that Danielson believes is essential to the community.

“The human-animal bond is so important, and the residents of this county demand that strays and all animals are treated very well,” she says. “We are lucky in San Diego to have elected officials that listen and are supportive of this department. Without them, we wouldn’t be where we are today.”

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

More »Related Stories

Downtown Buzz: Bragging Rights for San Diego Startups

This week's business and tech news from around downtown

Things to Do: May 23-29

The best events in San Diego this week

March for Babies Raises $500,000

San Diego Charity News for May 23
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Charitable Events

May 2016

Today

  • Sun
  • Mon
  • Tue
  • Wed
  • Thu
  • Fri
  • Sat
01 02 03 04 05 06 07
08 09 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20 21
22 23 24 25 26 27 28
29 30 31 01 02 03 04
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Most Popular

  1. San Diego's Next Hot Neighborhoods
    Where everyone will be living in 2016
  2. San Diego’s Coolest Companies
    If a job is essential, let’s make it enjoyable. Welcome to working in the 21st century
  3. The Best of North County 2016
    There’s never been a better time to experience NoCo’s charms
  4. Get Outside: 15 Outdoor Challenges
    Take your workouts to new heights and lengths with our list of San Diego’s best hikes, bike paths, and swims
  5. FIRST LOOK: Herb & Wood
    Brian Malarkey and Chris Puffer strike again in Little Italy
  6. FIRST LOOK: Liberty Public Market
    It's not Pike Place. It's not the Ferry Building. But it's the same idea.
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module
Edit Module

Connect With Us:

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit Module Edit Module
Edit ModuleShow Tags