Adopt-A-Shelter-Dog Month

Kane at Reed (2)Throughout October we celebrate Adopt-A-Shelter-Dog month. This annual celebration raises awareness of the approximately 4 million dogs in shelters in the United States right now.

The Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando is proud to support this national event by offering $25 adoptions all month long on regularly priced pets (normally $75), age six months or older, at our Orlando and Sanford shelters.

Can’t adopt or already have pets? There’s still a lot you can do to help dogs in need during Adopt-A-Shelter-Dog month.

10 ways to help shelter dogs:

  1. Help spread the word! Share adoptable pet photos from the Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando on Facebook and encourage friends to do the same.
  2. Ensure your pet is spayed or neutered. This is a vital step toward preventing additional unwanted puppies and kittens.
  3. Create your very own personal page to celebrate your pets adopt-a-versary,  birthday, Halloween or any other creative idea you have! Then ask friends or family to support you. Each donation, whether $5 or $10, is significant toward providing care to pets in need.
  4. Share our shelter wish list with friends and family or start a donation drive. Items like dog and cat treats, toys, and towels go a long way toward making pets stay in our shelter more comfortable. Most items can be easily purchased on Amazon.
  5. Microchip your pet! By reuniting lost pets with their owners, we reduce the stress on local shelters in the area. Without a microchip, only 15% of dogs that enter a shelter are reunited with their owners.
  6. Attend the 25th Anniversary of Furball on Saturday, November 5 at Rosen Shingle Creek.  Tickets are available online now.
  7. Tweet about it! This is a great start: “October is Adopt-A-Shelter-Dog month! Check out @PetAllianceGO’s pets now:”
  8. Donate!  We invest $356.50 in each dog and $225.50 in each cat up for adoption. Fees are typically $75, we depend on community support for the difference.
  9. Sign up to volunteer at the Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando. We have shelters in Orlando and Sanford with opportunities in a variety of areas including photography, fostering, helping with special events or just being advocates for us in the community.
  10. Subscribe to our monthly newsletter! It’s fast, free and fun! Each month you’ll get event news, pet health tips and more!



August Volunteers of the Month

JeffLisaAug16Jeff and Lisa are a couple who work so amazing individually, but also make an incredible team. They are here almost every Sunday caring for the cats as Kitty Cuddlers. Lisa is also amazing at taking pictures of the cats while she is playing with them. A lot of her pictures are actually on our website as the cats profile picture! Jeff and Lisa are both extremely involved in our foster program. I don’t know the last time they weren’t fostering kittens (tough job right?).

We are so thankful for their time given to Pet Alliance. They are amazing volunteers and we love having them on our team!


JoshAug16Josh is a fairly new volunteer to Pet Alliance. His home is in New York, but because he visits Orlando so often, he thought it would be a great idea to give of his time to his passion: giving love to dogs in a shelter. Since his start as a Bark Buddy, he is here every time he visits Florida, and is here multiple times in a week. He makes sure every dogs gets out at least once a day, and likes to take special care of the older dogs, and dogs that have been here a while.

Thank you so much for your hard work Josh! You are amazing and we are so glad to have you at Pet Alliance!

Volunteers of the Month

LorraineMayVOTMLorraine has been a Volunteer at Pet Alliance for 12 years! She started in 2004 as a Kitty Cuddler and has become a Lead Volunteer and Crafty Critter. She helps in the monthly Interactive Training Sessions, teaching new volunteers the ins and outs of being a Kitty Cuddler. She also makes comfy cozy blankets for all of the shelter kitties. We are so thankful for Lorraine’s positive attitude and sweet demeanor with the adoptable cats and potential adopters!


EmmaMayVOTMEmma has been volunteering at Pet Alliance as a Bark Buddy since June 2015! She aspires to become a Veterinarian and soon started volunteering as a Hospital Helper in our Shelter Clinic. She has served over 330 hours in a little less than a year! Emma has recently been accepted into University of Florida, where she will pursue her passion in working with animals as Veterinarian in their College of Veterinary Medicine. We are so proud of her and thank her for all her service at Pet Alliance!


TerriMayVOTMTerri is an energetic, compassionate Bark Buddy who volunteers her time freely to exercise the dogs through our jog-a-dog program, socialize them at our shelter, give them baths and help them get adopted at Petsmart or other off-site events. In addition to donating her time to the dogs, she also donates enrichment items such as kiddy pools for the dogs to cool off in during these hot summer months! Thank you Terri!


DorrMayVOTMDorothy dedicates 3 hours every Tuesday and Thursday to the cats in the Sanford shelter! Whether she is socializing cats, training new volunteers or fostering kittens, we can always count on Dorothy! We truly appreciate the almost 1,000 hours Dorothy has given, but more importantly, the cats appreciate it!

Summer Volunteer Opportunities

Looking to become involved at the Pet Alliance but not sure the shelter is for you? We have lots of opportunities outside of the shelter including Office, Wizard, Party Animal (special events), Pet Food Pantry and Foster Care. This summer both of our shelter locations will be holding multiple Open Houses for these non-shelter roles.

One of the most important ways you can help homeless pets is to open your heart and home through foster care. Because pets are not eligible for adoption until eight weeks of age, they need a loving home to mature in. Foster parents play a pivotal part in the early socialization of these little ones, which is important to their overall development.

We are in need of additional Foster Homes for our incoming kitten and puppy population, which is where you come in! If you are interested in becoming a Foster Parent contact our Volunteer Department and sign up to attend one of our four upcoming Open Houses.

Orlando Open Houses

Sanford Open Houses

Thanks to our Foster Parents, we are able to provide safe, stable homes for our puppies and kittens to grow in. Please consider opening your home to a foster pet (or litter!) and help us ensure our underage animals are taken care of.

Thank you, Volunteers!

VolunteerCatFoodBetween April 12 and the 18th, the Pet Alliance of Greater Orlando will celebrate the outstanding commitment of its volunteers as part of National Volunteer Appreciation Week.  Last year alone, volunteers contributed more than 46,000 hours of their time to the organization in almost every area of operations. Volunteers are involved with shelter operations, helping to provide direct care to our resident animals, assist in our veterinary clinics, and are ambassadors who help share our message throughout the community at events and educational opportunities.

In addition to exercising, socializing and providing enrichment activities for our dogs and cats, our Bark Buddies and Kitty Cuddlers help show our shelter pets to potential adopters, directly impacting the animal’s chances of finding a forever home. As an organization, Pet Alliance is always striving to make positive changes in the lives of animals in our temporary care and to ultimately have each pet learn manners and skills to set them and their new adoptive family up for success in an adoptive home. With the help of our growing volunteer team, we are able to successfully implement new ideas and enrichment activities, leading to happier, healthier, and more adoptable shelter pets.

mya-adoptionA wonderful example of their efforts is Mya.  She arrived at the Pet Alliance terrified of people but especially so of men wearing hats.  Our volunteers worked on desensitization techniques alongside of our Animal Behaviorist, Diane Anderson.  These sessions allowed Mya to overcome her fears and be adopted into a loving home as you see here.

Throughout the week of April 12 – 18, we will have a serious of special events to show our appreciation for the great work our volunteers do.  You can see photos from these celebrations by following us on Facebook and Twitter.

Please join us in thanking all of our wonderful volunteers for their service to homeless pets!

Meet Martin Lochte: Longtime Bark Buddy

Meet Martin! An ex-engineer of 28 years, Martin spends a lot of his free time, now that he’s retired, at the Pet Alliance. One day when he was still working full time, a colleague posed the question, “What would you do if you didn’t have to work?” Martin decided he’d like to help animals, and, a couple of years ago when Martin and his wife decided to try the retired life, he began volunteering at the Pet Alliance.

Martin Lochte is coming up on two years as a Bark Buddy. He has also been a Hospital Helper in Shelter Medical, helped with offsite adoptions at PetSmart, and recently became a Kennel Coach. Martin and his wife also have fostered two sets of puppies. All of these positions have been very rewarding, he says, and he feels they have helped him learn more about animals and have helped him become a better pet owner.

martin and sensi2A big lesson Martin has learned is that animals are not predictable and no two animals are the same. For example, he recently had a dog accidently discharge a fire extinguisher, something he said he saw happen in slow motion. Working with shelter animals is definitely a job that keeps you on your toes!

“Working with other animal lovers is great,” Martin said. “You meet good people from such diverse backgrounds. I am always learning. Of course spending time with an affectionate animal puts a smile on your face. But nothing beats introducing an animal to a family, watching them interact, seeing that it’s a perfect match, and watching them go home together.”

With time on his hands in retirement, Martin enjoys researching and studying things that interest him, socializing, flying and repairing radio-controlled helicopters, and tinkering with microcontrollers and robotics. Of course, Martin also spends time with his own two dogs, Baily – an 11 year-old Lab/Great Dane mix, and Brody – a two year-old Australian Shepherd mix. He met Brody at the Pet Alliance while volunteering in shelter medical and knew he was special.

Martin has this advice for potential volunteers: “Just try it. It doesn’t matter if you’re introverted or extroverted, like dogs or cats. There is something you can do that helps animals while waiting for their forever homes, and you’ll have fun doing it. It is all very rewarding.”