Happy Tails

We love to get updates from adopters or other folks who have news of our "graduates."

We'll be celebrating the 10th Anniversary of Shelter building this summer and inviting all of our families to join fun! Watch our events page for news.


Cory had been with us nearly 6 months. Finally, a wonderful family came in and adopted Cory (now Bijoux) and here's what they said, "Bijoux is a sweet little guy and adjusting to his new life. We are very grateful to you for having kept him for this long…He was meant for us!"


"Hi there from Ava, Missouri. I just wanted to share that my sweet Miss Susie Q, although a really old lady now, is doing wonderfully! Suzie Q is a Mastiff/Pit mix that I adopted from the Scott's Valley Humane Society in 2006. I understand they closed and/or merged with you? She is now 14 years old and much slower than she used to be, as we all are, LOL. She lives on a 35 acre horse ranch in southern, MO. with her 9 other brothers and sisters. Her favorite pastime now is making sure the couch closest to the fire place stays warm. She has been and still is a blessing to this family. I will be forever thankful for the opportunity of adpoting this wonderful girl!"


"We adopted "Diego" (his new name is Tango!) from the shelter in August of 2015.

We are a "big dog" family with two border collies.  Never did I imagine adopting a small dog ..but when I saw him at the shelter - it was instant love and knew he needed to become part of the family.

He is our love bug and goes with us everywhere.  His favorite spot is on my son's sailboat! So well mannered - He has a routine each morning to sit with my husband in the crook of his arm as he drinks his morning coffee.  

I am a converted Chi fan!!!!  Attached is a collage of Tango and his new life with our family.  We have been blessed."

Cricket at home

Cricket at home


This dog was found in the fields in the area of Green Valley…that is all his intake information told us about where he came from. Further notes say, “This little guy came into the shelter with an injured eye, we surgically removed it so he only has one eye now but is very cute. This is a little dog that will do better in a home without young boisterous children. He is initially wary of new people but may eventually warm up to them. He will need a quiet home.”

He lingered a while at the Shelter, a doted on favorite with the volunteers, until just the right folks came in to adopt him! They sent us an update just the other day:

“We adopted Cornelius a couple of weeks ago (and renamed him Cricket).  He fit right in with our family and has found his favorite spot on Saturday mornings.  He's a great little guy.

When I saw that picture of how he looked when you guys got him, I hoped he'd have a happy home from here on.  When I met him I knew he'd fit right in with us.  Little dog, big heart!!”


"I adopted my wonderful boy Barkley (previously Preston :) about 3 months ago...I am so grateful my handsome man came in to my life, he is such a special, quirky and charismatic dog. He's opened up so much in the past few months and is the best friend anyone could ask for. He has some separation issues that we are working on, some carpet, curtains and shoes had to pay the price but a small price indeed for having him:) He is slowly but surely getting used to my kitties and even made friends with a tortoise! He spends his days up at Happy Tails Dog Day Camp and just loves it, always making new dog friends:) He loves the beach, walking around the neighborhood and looking for gophers he also loves to hang out up at the cellar where my boyfriend makes wine. 

Barkley came in to my life when I needed it the most and continues to be my friend and teacher at the same time, it hasn't always been easy and at times it's a struggle to figure him out but sooo unbelievably worth it. Every day is another learning experience, I'm so proud with how far he's come in just 3 months. Thank you to everyone at the shelter that loved him so much :)

Thank you again! We'll be back once I find a bigger house to find a little friend for Barkley:)"


"Dear Jen and all the wonderful people that make the Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter a special place,

I thought you might like to know how Panda is doing. She is such a sweet, smart, spunky, special dog! She gets along with her 3 feline siblings, and has found her way around the house and the yard very quickly! She mastered house training with just a few accidents. We went walking in the neighborhood and she noticed a flock of wild turkeys about 50 ft before I did.

You were right Jen when you said she was a gem!

I'm so lucky to have her in my life and so thankful for the good care you gave her before we found each other!"


"Loving Princess. Thank you for a great experience. Jeff, Michelle and Parker (formerly Princess) "

These wonderful folks contacted the Shelter first via Facebook, asking if we might have an older, cat-friendly dog for them to adopt. The followed up that online conversation with and in-person visit and fell in love with a beautiful older Boxer who as here with us.

They asked us to remind folks about the wonders of adopting an older pet!


"Thank you! We love the Shelter and everyone there. Yoli is our second amazing dog from the Shelter in Santa Cruz. Yoli and I were privileged to return last summer and participate in your S.C. youth summer camp program. I really can’t thank you enough for giving animals and prospective owners such a wonder place to learn about animals and to find that next special pet. We love, love, love you guys!!!"

  This is Angel, who was Bradley when he was here with us at the Shelter. He came in with a tangled coat and needing a lot of TLC. He has landed in just the right home and is very much his family's beloved Angel now!

  Hank & Harry

My husband and I adopted Hank (shortened from Henry) and Harry in February 2013. They are the cuddliest cats I've ever met! They greatly enjoy playing with our baby's toys and Hank especially is in love with the baby. They snuggle all the time and he even comes running whenever he hears her cry. Thank you for letting us take home these excellent cats.

-The Cheddar family 


Bonus (AKA Marble)

From her Foster:

Bonus (formerly Marble at the shelter) is doing great in her new home with her brother Mar.  I was lucky enough to be able to foster her and after she got past her fear of people, she blossomed.  She's smart as a whip and her new Dad is taking her and her brother everywhere. 

I do miss her so but know that she's having a wonderful new life. 


Lily (AKA Shalimar)

Thank you for letting us adopt Shalimar. She has been renamed Lily. I attached a photo of her. We adopted her on April 20 and we absolutely adore her. 

  Luna (AKA Brittany)

I am writing to share with you the incredible experience we have had with adopting a cat from your shelter.  

We are a family of four, plus a few canine companions.  Our youngest daughter (age 13.5) is on the autistic spectrum and after attending a summer camp at the animal shelter, had been begging us to adopt a kitten.  After months of consideration (we have only owned dogs), we agreed to look for a cat to adopt.  In late December our family took a trip down to your shelter.  Given the holiday season, our options for kittens were very limited.  

A volunteer recommended we visit with a kitty that was a little under a year.  She had been rescued from a hoarding situation and had been both in and out doors. Upon first glance it also appeared that she may had been carrying a litter of kittens before coming to the shelter.  I was a bit uncertain given her history, however, the moment our daughter sat in the visiting room with her we knew she was a match.  

The kitty we adopted,  "Brittany", now "Luna", has been a wonderful addition to our family.  Not only does she serve as a therapy pet for our daughter (she is always by her side), she has transitioned into our household with flying colors.  I am so glad your volunteer staff member pointed us in her direction.

I have included a photo of Luna just in case you would like to share her story with others. 


Arthur the Cat

Here is a photo of Arthur, who we adopted last Friday. Not only does he like our dog, he loves the car. Here's a photo of him after we took him to the vet...what a mellow, lovable cat! 


Mokey (AKA Tilly)

I wanted to give you an update on Mokey (formerly Tilly at the shelter) since I adopted her in August.  She is adjusting very well to her new home.  She didn't have a lot of exposure to the world when I adopted her but she has been learning and gaining confidence everyday.  Mokey is learning her basic obedience and has even learned a few tricks.  She has tried a few agility obstacles as well and especially loves running through the tunnel. 

Mokey loves her frisbees and is proving to be quite the athlete.  She also loves her weekend visits back to Santa Cruz to play at the beach with her Border Collie buddies.

Thank you so much for allowing me to bring such a great dog into my life. 

  Pippin (AKA Cider)

My boyfriend and I adopted Pippin, previously known as Cider, in late September this year. When we first saw him, he was so scared and anxious and the woman who showed him to us was worried he wouldn't find a home. But as soon as I picked him up and put him on my lap, he started purring and licking my face! He is now a very confident, happy and spoiled little kitten. He loves to be the center of attention and always wants to be around us. We are so grateful to have him in our lives! 


Happy (AKA Hammon)

Dr. Gleason (our Shelter veterinarian)...

Last week we adopted "Hammond" (now "Happy") and today, through the help of volunteer Nan Moore, I have received a copy of his Medical History. I'm impressed by all you did for Happy.

I want to thank and compliment you for that loving care you gave to Happy.  Your effort will not be forgotten by our family.  And, I assure you that "Happy" will live a bountiful life with us.  If you ask Ms. Moore she can describe the circumstances of "Happy's" new forever home.

"Happy's" medical record will be inserted into his record at our family veterinarian's office.  Her name is Gillian Hamilton DVM and her impression of "Happy's" intake photo was, I quote, "Oh my God!"  That will be her reference in reviewing Happy's medical record.

I owe you a debt I shall never be able to pay; but, in seeing Happy bounce around our home I will think of you, Nan , and the others who gave him back his life.


/s/ George (with Mary Lou, Happy, Sparky, and Puddles) 


Archer (AKA Rusty)

Hello there! I just wanted to thank you all so much for my favorite little man! I adopted "Rusty" ( Who is now named Archer) a few weeks ago, and he's so amazing! I was asked by your wonderful staff to share a picture of him in his new home, so here it is!  

  Lupine (AKA Patti)

We adopted Lupine April 2012 when she was a puppy - we couldn't have asked for a better dog. Whether it's working out in the yard with us sniffing out gophers, walking, bike rides, car rides, rock climbing... she's up for it. We are so grateful to have her as a part of the family. Thank you to all the staff at Santa Cruz Animal Shelter! 

   Pollykat Fuzzapuss (AKA Polly)

We adopted Polly in July of 2013. Here she is "chillaxin" on the couch.

Polly is a curious, expressive (and talkative), generally sweet (she is spunky!) cat that becomes more a member of the family every day. We appreciate her willingness to be cuddled (on her own terms) and her expert spider hunting skills.

At a mere 7 pounds, Polly's favorite past time is tormenting our (her) very sensitive and submissive 40 pound dog.

Thanks SC Animal Shelter for taking her in and giving her the chance to find another home. 

She is very loved.

Clan Campbell



Our Happy Rescue Experience

When our 10-year old dog died, we were very sad, but tried to look at it sensibly. We are too old to get a puppy who might outlive us and then be put somewhere unloved and anxious.

We had never really thought of a rescue dog, but friends who had had successful experiences with them convinced us it was worth a try. It was a long process visiting shelters and scanning their Web pages, but when we finally found a wonderful foster lady associated with the Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter who told us she had just taken on a little dog that sounded like what we would want. We decided to take a look. It only took one look, plus the information that the foster lady gave us about her experience with having this dog in her home.

We now have possibly the best dog ever! She is housebroken, good on walks, sleeps all night in a puffy bed next to us, eats her food well, sits on my lap, is quiet, and a little shy with new people, but not nervous. We named her Twilite, because she is grey and black and because she is in her twilight years, as are we! Thanks to all the people involved with dog rescue! There are great dogs out there who need a loving home and loving homes that need a dog. It has worked wonderfully for us. 



Hello to the caring staff at the 7th ave. shelter !

My girlfriend and I adopted Rocco the cat June 29,2013. Just thought we'd give you all a progress report as to his adjustment period at his new digs.

He still is a little timid, but he is making himself at home(getting bolder) daily. He is a perfect fit with us! Content to be indoors and so affectionate and loving. He is very alert, intelligent, and always carries himself with an air of classic dignity( except for when a neighbor walks outside his windowsill perch or our vacuum cleaner is in operation.) Just a little more time and I hope he'll be totally at ease.

He is eating Natural Balance For Fat Cats dry food and we make sure to cover the package label so he can't read it and get offended. He is also starting to play with our Venetian blinds cords and we will soon get some interactive cat toys for him so he can get extra exercise . 


Camille (AKA Brandie)

This is Miz Camille happy at home. She now lives with an adopted canine sibling and people of her very own! 


Ducky (AKA Dukey)

I adopted a chicken from your shelter last Easter. Her name was Dukey at the time but we changed it to Ducky. She is doing great and I attached a picture of her with her flock (that's her in the back on the right...as you can see she fits right in with our other Polish chickens).

Thank you!


Rusty (AKA Cheddar)
When Matt and I decided we wanted to adopt a cat, we invited my parents to come along and help us pick one out.   When we got to the shelter my parents pointed out a cat named Cheddar to me.  I asked and the volunteer told me that Cheddar was a little shy and sometimes it was hard to get him out of his bin.  I immediately said “no thanks, I’ll look at another cat.”  I figured that Cheddar was not what I was looking for.  I wanted a confident lovebug.
The volunteer convinced me to give him a chance, telling me that he really was a sweet cat.  Feeling that I could humor this volunteer for five minutes, I agreed.  When we sat down in the private room with Cheddar he looked so nervous.  He didn't want to play and just sat doing nothing.  My mom even commented that he had a “haunted look” in his eyes.  He wouldn't even look at us.
Just as I was about to call the volunteer in and tell her that he was not what we were looking for, Cheddar jumped up on the bench, and sat in between Matt and I.  He didn't look at us, but it was clear that he wanted to be next to us and feel us next to him. If we would move away from him he would follow, making sure that he was touching one of us.   It was then that we realized that underneath this scared cat, was a sweetheart that wanted to be loved. 
It’s been almost three months now and it is amazing how much he has come out of his shell!!!  Rusty (formally known as Cheddar) is playful, curious, and very loving.  He loves chasing and pouncing on the mouse toy.  He has also become quite the cuddler.  Every morning he wakes us up by snuggling next to us, purring and head-butting us. And when we come home from work, he greets us at the door with his tail up.  He is also quite the food lover and if we are one minute late with breakfast or dinner, he will remind us with the cutest squeak of a meow. 
It is amazing how confident he has become.  When friends come to visit, he no longer runs away and hides, but will stay in the room with all of us.
Thank you so much Santa Cruz Animal Shelter for taking care of Rusty before we found him, and thank you so much to the volunteers who listened to what we were looking for and convinced us to give this little guy a chance.  He has become the love or our lives and we can’t imagine a life without him.  


Mongo (AKA Ringo)

Hello! We adopted a 8 month old lab-mix from your Santa Cruz shelter in August. He was "Ringo" if you remember him. We immediately fell in love with him there and continue to love him even more every day. We named him Mongo. He was a little "puppy"-fiesty but we quickly became a perfect fit and took him to classes and he is now a well behaved son to us! I can't tell you enough how much I appreciate what you do for these animals. We are so thankful to have Mongo! I included a holiday photo:) I hope you have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year and again thank you--and your staff--for all you do! 


Tucker (AKA Floyd)

My wife and I adopted a lovely standard Poodle from the Shelter three weeks ago, and perhaps a bit of before-and-after would be fun to see.

He's just lovely, and very connected - he sticks close to us around the house. With his ear infections on the wane, his energy level is higher, 'tho he is still pretty serene. Little barking, and no lunging at cars or bicycles. The two dogs do very well together.

I was treated very nicely by the volunteer who first showed him to me just after the Shelter opened on November 2. I don't remember her name, but she said she'd done some grooming when he came in to remove the mats in his coat. She seemed quite attached to him. If you know who she is, please say thanks for me.

You can view an album of Tucker pictures over on the Shelter's Facebook Wall.  


Nilla (AKA Breeze)

I just wanted to let you know how much we love our dog that we adopted in Nov. She was known by the shelter as "Breeze", but we changed her name to "Nilla". Thank you so much!


George (AKA Rex)

Rex was actually the dog we came to see at your shelter, but he made a terrible first impression.  When we first saw him, he was shaking from head to toe and seemed so frightened we decided to look at other dogs.  Although very shy and nervous around strangers, Rex seemed so grateful for any attention; my daughter and I knew we had to bring him home. 

We adopted Rex and on the way home, Amy re-christened him George. For the first few weeks, George only ventured out of his crate, and only with a lot of coaxing, to go outside for a few brief moments.  I took to calling him Mr. Slinky because when he would venture out, he'd stay as close to the walls as possible, and as soon as he took care of business, would slink back to his crate.

We treated George very gently, and were thrilled when one day he came out of his crate without any coaxing and jumped onto the couch.  His head stopped drooping, his tail stopped hanging between his legs - it now wags in a circle when he's happy.  Instead of avoiding touch, he loves to be petted and cuddled.  

He bears little resemblance to the shaking all over dog he was in the shelter and Amy and I are both so glad that we followed our hearts and brought George home.





Salty (AKA Darla) & Pepper (AKA Iman)

I adopted Salty (aka Darla) and Pepper (aka Iman) in October of 2005. They are a mother and kitten pair that were featured as the Pets of the Week. Pepper had come in with 5 kittens and Salty was the only one left. They are the perfect pets and love to sunbathe and relax near my surround heat. The kitten is now twice the size of her mother! I love them and thank all the people who helped to take care of them! 


Juneau (aka Turley)

I adopted Juneau (formerly Turkey) a week before moving to Mendocino County. We begin most of our days by taking a walk to the local coffee shop, where we usually run into one or two of the other local dogs. All the baristas know him well, and if Juneau sits nicely while I order my drink, he gets a biscuit (or several). I use our short walks around town to practice polite greeting and loose-leash walking, since Juneau loves meeting people and sometimes lets his enthusiasm get in the way of his manners. He isn't totally convinced that folks don't bend down toward him so that he can kiss them on the mouth, but he is getting very good at not jumping, and sometimes he will even sit and offer a paw to "shake" with new acquaintances. Since I do most of my work from home, Juneau spends a lot of time sleeping on a blanket at my feet— or playing by my desk with a very durable stuffed owl that his grandma bought him from the pet store after he tried to steal it for the fourth time. We usually go for a long walk on one of the old logging roads in the area each day, and sometimes we visit the local dog park. He plays very well with other dogs; he is also very alert and learns quickly, making him one of the star students in his Saturday puppy class. This week, he perfectly demonstrated a leashless heel. And since Juneau was adopted on the same day and at the same time as his sister Hera (formerly Cranberry), we have been able to get the two puppies together for playdates when Juneau and I come down to Santa Cruz. It was pretty clear at their first reunion that each one "got" who the other one was; they love to chase each other around her yard and will wrestle to the point of mutual exhaustion. 

As my comments probably imply, I am pretty much constantly delighted and impressed by my "Little J" (also known as "Bug," "Boo," "Baby," "J-Dog," "Bupper"... the list goes on and becomes increasingly absurd). I love watching him learn, having a cheerful little partner to explore new trails and parks and streets with, and falling asleep every night with him curled up beside me. I admit I was nervous about the work and responsibility that come with raising a puppy, but Juneau has enriched my life more than I ever anticipated. He has helped me make friends in my new town. He kept me company through what I'm sure would have been a much harder transition to a new place. In trying to give him consistency, exercise, and structure, I've been more successful working remotely and getting out and about. And he is just the sweetest, most devoted and affectionate boy. I will always be grateful to the staff and volunteers at the Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter for taking such good care of my baby before he was mine, and for helping us find each other!



Thirteen (aka Leana)

I wanted to say thank you so much for letting us adopt little Leana.  We renamed her Thirteen, mainly because of the date we adopted her, also because we love the character 'Thirteen' on House M.D.

I attached a couple of shots of her from this morning.  She is getting used to her new home, she's met the other cats and there is no problem at all.  She is amazing. 


Amanda (aka Button)

This morning Amanda and Mia took a sunbath together. Amanda's recent pedicure included a nail trimming. Do you remember how long they were? 


Mia (aka Sweetie)

Our home has been invaded by a cute little grey-haired imp who is a born slapstick comic!  We are all madly in love with her (our older kitty, Sam, still has some reservations).  She sleeps on Mariel or next to her, to Mariel's endless delight and I can hardly extract Mariel from her bedroom as she is squealing with laughter at Mia's antics.

Mia is making herself completely comfortable and has done a preliminary exploration of the house.  She still hasn't been in the loft and attic but we're keeping those off limits and for Sam only until they're both more at ease with each other.

Mia is making her little meows so I guess I'll just have to play with her some more, sigh.  It's going to be harder to go back to school and work, knowing we have such an adorable playmate waiting at home for us!

Thanks so much for being such a wonderful kitty "foster mom"!! 


Kaya (aka Keira)

My Siberian Husky Kaya, formerly Keira, came home with me in February 2010 and she has been a constant companion since! I had been really sad and wanted a dog for a companion and when she was posted on PetFinder, the next day I drove from the East Bay to meet her. She is just the best and I knew it from the moment I met her!

Apparently, her and her brother were purchased from a breeder then were left alone too much and got into some trouble so they brought them to you only to be adopted again into separate homes and Kaya was brought back shortly after. When I got her she was just as happy and playful as can be and although you can tell she had a rough first 10 months, she’s doing wonderfully! Thanks again for such a wonderful staff and facility and for my new companion! 


Leonard and Miz Biz (aka Priscilla)

We adopted Leonard and Mizzy back in May 2012 and we can't even imagine our family without them. We are in love. Thank you, Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter, for being a safe place for all critters(fuzzy, feathery, and scaley) to stay until they find their forever homes. We plan to be back next spring to find a puppy or young dog to add to our clan :-)

Thanks for all you do!


Cosmo the Wonder Kitty (aka Wilma)

Hi Jen, please let everyone at the shelter know that "Wilma" - now Cosmo the Wonder kitty - is frisky & sweet & has made our life complete! We all love her & look forward to a long, happy life together.  Thank you SCAS for a great experience! Xo Kyra 


Bella (aka Farah)

I adopted Bella a month ago and since being home with me loves snuggling, sleeping next to me, sitting on my lap and playing with her toys. She’s adjusted well to my home.

We love each other! Thanks Animal Shelter!

-Chris P 



We recently brought home Gracie from your animal shelter. We took her in on Monday morning and she is doing much better with her cough.

We thought we would share an adorable picture of her and Loomis. She is adjusting very well and so is Loomis. Please share with your volunteers and staff. We have so many adorable pictures.

Thank you for everything. We will be in touch next week to start the adoption process for Gracie. She is a wonderful addition to our family! 


Reinita (aka) Shadow and Lily (aka Dayna)

I adopted Reinita (aka Shadow) on my one-year anniversary of volunteering at the shelter. She was my first small dog and my introduction into the feisty Chihuahua mixes I have grown to love! I tried fostering Lily (aka Dayna) for about five minutes before I adopted her in the spring of 2012. Both my little dogs love their big sister, Sierra, who I adopted from the Truckee Humane Society in 2008. Thanks to all the people who took care of my girls before they came to live with me! 



I have been volunteering at Santa Cruz Animal Shelter for a couple years now. I’ve seen many dogs that I connected with come and go, and it was always a pleasant feeling when I saw dogs that I had spent time with get adopted. When I first saw Alvin he looked to me like he was the sweetest thing ever, but he also looked very sad to me. He's got these eyes that just look right through you. I knew right away he and I would get along.

I took him out on SPOTT one day, and I had so much fun with him that I began taking him out a few other times too. Then, I began taking him home on overnighters and eventually just ended up fostering him. I live in a big home that is perfect for a dog. Nice big back yard and front yard. I live here with my boyfriend who loves dogs almost as much as I do but there was one problem, his parents own the house we live in, and they don't want dogs in their houses.

We had asked previously if we could get a dog and they said NO. After talking to them about it for weeks, while having him stay with us the whole time, it was very difficult to think about us not being able to keep him because we were already so attached, and also having to think about what if he never gets adopted?

After the 3rd week, we drove up to introduce Alvin to my boyfriend’s parents; Alvin was on his best behavior. He charmed them to say the least. It's almost as if he knew there was a decision to be made on his behalf, he can be a little bit of a handful so i was a little worried. They ended up telling us we can keep him! It was the best news I had received in so long.

Alvin has been so happy here. He has already brought so much love and joy into our lives in such a short time. He is a total goof ball with so much personality. He loves the beach, car rides, coming to work with me (i work at a vet clinic), and he could play fetch for 24 hours straight. He is a big part of our little family and we are so thankful to have him. He really is an amazing dog. Thanks to the Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter for providing this guy with a second chance. Everything happens for a reason and now this amazing pup has a loving home! 



I lost my beloved dog Gecko in March of 2010 at her age 16.  The loss of her personality and companionship was tough.  One day my neighbor, Kathy, a Shelter volunteer who knew Gecko very well, told me about a dog at the shelter  who had a personality much like Gecko's.  She though this dog, named Daisy, would be a good match for me. 

I met Daisy and saw instantly that her personality was indeed much like Gecko's:  frisky, energetic, a bit mischievous, sweet, and happy all the time. This dog had been found running loose twice, and her owner had surrendered her.  Why?  I can only think that it may have been a financial issue, because this was one great dog.  I adopted her in January 2011.  At that time she had a terrible rash and was 10 lbs underweight.  Through trial and error, I found out she required digestive enzymes to absorb nutrients from her food.  Once she was started on that regimen, her skin cleared up, her noxious gas problem resolved, and she gained her 10 lbs. back. 

Daisy is a loving companion and BFF to our cat Jazzy (also a shelter adoptee).  She loves running on the beach and bushwhacking through forests, and swimming in the ocean and in lakes.  Although the shelter told us she was a lab/pit, her DNA testing came back with neither lab nor pit, but a true Heinz 57, including German Shorthaired Pointer, Whippet, Golden Retriever, and Great Pyrenees!  Although I wouldn't have named her Daisy, I kept the name because it really suits her personality: such a sunny disposition.  Thanks to Kathy and the animal shelter, we have a new family member! 



I adopted Bacon (pit/mystery mix) after, driving down from San Francisco after seeing him online. When I met him at the shelter with his foster, his happy-go-lucky personality was evident and it was an easy decision to take him home. Everyone I told loved his name, so I didn't change it.

He is settling in well and rarely leaves my side when we're together. He is an amazingly social guy, always wanting to greet and play with every person, dog, or cat that he encounters. At about 8 months now, he's getting plenty of socialization with daily park/beach outings and dog play-dates, and is doing well in his obedience class. He's incredibly affectionate with me and my friends, and often attempts to crawl into our laps despite the fact that he is about 40 lbs. and growing. Though he's full of puppy energy, he displays so much intelligence and in many ways is already very well-behaved and adaptable. From the first day he has been very good in his crate, house-trained, and quiet. Strangers frequently remark on his friendliness and how good he is with other dogs both large and small, as he is non-reactive even if another dog is barking or growling at him from afar. 

I know he was at the shelter for a while before joining me, but whatever experiences he's had in his life up to this point have clearly set him up for success. I suspect he will mature into a mellow, very well-adjusted adult. He definitely keeps me on my toes much of the time, but I am really happy that I found him and very grateful to the Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter and his fosters for making this adoption possible.  


Ikeeah (aka Luther)

Just an update after a little over a month of enjoying Luther now named Ikeaah I am happy to report he has been adopted and is in his new forever home and doing well! This pup has come a long ways and we are happy that we could save him.

I have attached a picture of him and Deuce his new brother after a play in the park.

Shelters and rescues working together can save so many more lives! Our thanks to North American Dutch Shepherd Rescue. 



Hi.  To update you, Ziva is doing so well - we all love her.  She has filled out more since we got her and her blood panel/workups showed that she was fine.  She gets along beautifully with Ajax and sometimes will initiate play with him - even doing the "Doberman body slam" typical of Doberman play.  Ed and I have been working on her training - and I think having Ajax do them with her helps her, too.  Ziva also does the "Doberman spin" when it comes to feeding time.  She is a big hugger - when I come home, she jumps up and wraps her front legs around me.  Everyone at the vet clinic thinks she is very, very sweet.

She loves to get in my lap and will sleep with me when I lie down or go to bed - if I am not home and Ed is off, she will sleep with Ed.  Ajax is so good with her, so I think he's met his perfect match!   


Zena (aka Smoothie) and Oreo (aka Monty)

Here are Xena who used to be smoothie and Oreo who used to be Monty. They are tearing up a little bit of toilet paper.

They are very happy and healthy with us and we have been nothing but pleased with them. Poor Oreo was a stray and didn't know what to make of Xena's playfulness at first, but they are best buds now. 

   Indy (aka Trini)

A picture of Indy.
He found an antler while out walking one day.  Loves warm laundry. He and his buddy Paco live in a place with a nice ocean view. He's got the good life!

Have a great holiday season.



Bella (aka Peanut)

Bella is doing great. We adopted a scared anxious dog, and now have a happy go lucky love bug! She enjoys lying in the sun and cuddling. Couldn't imagine her not being part of my family.  


Shadow (aka Curious)

I adopted Shadow (previously: Curious) a couple of days before Christmas. She was my Christmas gift to myself and to her as well. Within the first hour of being home with us Shadow had fallen into place like she had lived here her entire life. She's incredibly affectionate, talkative, well behaved and mellow. She loves to sleep under the Christmas tree (posing, giggle) as if she knows she's given us the gift of her love, and received ours in return.

Thank you SCCAS and all of your staff and volunteers. I'm so thankful to have her in my life. 


Simon (aka Ebon)

Hi I adopted a kitten in August 2011 and I just wanted to update you guys on how he is doing.  He took no time at all making himself at home here.  He is extremely affectionate and loves other people.  I was worried about how my old nervous dog, Sandy, would react to him.  But after a few days of introducing them they became the best of friends. 

Simon has brought out a new puppy in Sandy that we haven't seen in years.  Simon is also the most skilled soccer player I have ever seen.  He loves kicking around balls of tin foil and is an expert at deflecting them when we try to kick it past him. 

I want to also thank you for your hard work and dedication with the animals at the shelter.  After doing some volunteer work and adopting Simon I was inspired to change my education and now I'm training to be a Vet Tech at Foothill College. 


Pancho (aka Pedro)

He's a pit bull/sharpei mix that was with you for most of October, 2011. We adopted him on October 28 and brought him home to Novato, CA.

Well, his name is now Pancho and he is a gem!
We are all so pleased that he's one of our family - he's sweet and funny and full of personality.  He's also very strong and loves running in the woods,
especially if there are a few squirrels around.  And afterward, at home, he just wants to cuddle like a baby and snore himself closer to our hearts.

I'm attaching a photo of him presiding over our yard from the top of the closed hot tub while we slave away in the garden.  He is wonderful company and he likes being a part of whatever we're doing.  And I have to say that whoever trained this 6 year old did a great job - in Spanish and English!  He listens well and his behavior is great.

Boy!  We sure lucked out with this guy. Thanks to all of you who helped us that day - especially the husband & wife volunteers who kind of double-teamed us when we arrived. We may not have chosen him had it not been for all of your encouragement and enthusiasm.

Keep up the good work. 

Beefy (aka Jengle) and Iggy Aurora (aka Honey)
A few months ago my sister and I went in to the shelter “just to look” (I know, silly us). I was immediately drawn to a cat housed in a large cage in the reception area. Beefy was super mellow, not even flinching when different people and animals came in and out of the building. He was super cuddly and affectionate cat. While Beefy and I were getting acquainted  my sister had fallen for the cute, energetic, if slightly skittish Iggy Aurora. By the end of the visit we knew we couldn’t imagine leaving the shelter without these guys. 
Beefy was quick to adjust to the new house, whereas Iggy took a little longer and was still a bit skittish around new people. We kept the kitties separate for a few weeks, and were a little nervous  about introducing the two. It took a little while but warm up to each other but are now  becoming friends. We are so grateful to the Animal Shelter for helping us find out feline friends! 


Kook (aka Cookie)

It has been two weeks since I adopted Kook.  He is well-behaved, excellent grooming habits, mellow, and likes to fetch.  I already have another senior cat Ceo (Bonnie) that has a terminal condition but really perked up when Kook arrived.  CEO is a little put out that Kook is here so Kook just maintains his distance and does his own until Ceo stops stomping around.  They are great company for each other.  Kook is a great cat.  Thanks for keeping him around so I could adopt him. 



I wonder if you remember Jackie who I adopted in Watsonville almost three years ago!  He is my best pack-goat now, and one of my best friends, and here he is on a pass in the southern Sierras near Lake Edison.  He still likes to open gates and doors and tries to engage dogs in head butting games!  Anyone who knew him at the rescue in Watsonville will not be surprised to hear that! 



I adopted Saffron on Oct 18, 2011. She’s a 1yr old Min Pin who was brought in as a stray. I was told she has some separation anxiety issues. I am self-employed and live alone. I work from home primarily, but occasionally I have to see clients around town. I take Saffy with me when I can…. Sometimes she has to stay in the car and other times I can bring her in. When I am finished with my business, I make a big fuss when I see her and I am showered in return with loads of doggy lovin’. It all works out pretty good.

Since she’s a high-energy dog, I take her to the beach almost daily. At first we had a little problem of her not returning but she’s a chowhound. A pocketful of dog biscuits has solved that problem. She consistently returns to me when called now. She is super with other dogs, but big dogs scare her a bit. She’s only 10lbs. When frightened, she fast to return to me. We have made lots of friends, two legged and four and look forward to our social visits.

It is a real delight to watch her run like the wind on the beach. At home my house is filled with dog toys scattered everywhere. It’s been a long time since I’ve had such a mess in my house, but the trade off is worth more than any treasure. Saffron is loved, treasured and has become my true pal! As I write this, she is trying to scramble into my lap. 


William (aka Scott)

William is settling in nicely here. Right now he is curled up next to me, Simon and Sosie on the couch. I think he really likes having "siblings". When he comes home from work, he and Simon start playing right away! They have so much fun together.

Today I took him to see my consultant. William bopped around her office for a few minutes then he invited himself up onto her chair and fell asleep beside her or the whole session. She was smitten with him!

He's been enjoying the dog park a lot - seems to think he is a German Shepherd playing with all the dogs, big and small. He's been learning to come when called and how to sit. He's making progress. 


Cradle (aka Poppy)

I adopted "Poppy" on September 6th of last year (2011). It had been awhile since my first cat, my beloved Fluffy, had past away. I decided that I was ready for a new cat and I knew one thing for sure, I was going to adopt. I can't stand the thought of new kitties being born in to the world when there are already so many perfectly good adorable kitties just waiting for a loving home! Anyways, I fell in love with her.

She was named "Poppy" but I knew that she was special and needed a very special name. I named her after that string game, you know the one?...I used to play it when I was 8 or 12, somewhere around there, Cat's Cradle. Cradle was pretty shy at first, it took a few weeks for her to break out of her shell in such an active house, but she has :) and she loves it here and everyone loves her! We make jokes by calling her all sorts of silly names like Turtle, Pretzel, Cray-dog, Craycray, Ladle, Dradle, Coupon...and so on. Cradle is now best friends with our other adopted cat, Coco. They make quite the pair. He's a big fat Siamese cat. Everyone who meets her says that she has an awesome personality. I'm proud of what a lovely young kitty she has blossomed into!

Cradle is my best friend and it's all thanks to you guys and gals at the shelter! Thank you! 


Sachi (aka Lou) and Mika (aka Baby Girl)

We wanted to let everyone at the shelter (especially the foster family) know how well Sachi (formerly Lou) and Mika (formerly Baby Girl) are doing. They are amazing kittens; it's obvious that their foster family took very good care of them.

They are extremely social and greet everyone who comes into the house, including total strangers! They prefer to sleep in laps and have many willing volunteers among my three daughters and their friends. They even cuddle up with my six year old who is absolutely thrilled that they like her. They have no problem using their litter box and sleep all night without meowing. They have become part of our family so quickly and have already brought us so much joy and laughter even though they have only been here three days. Thank you for the wonderful service you provide to our community! 



Hi - we adopted Jasper at the end of January and he is such an amazing addition to our home. He has two sisters Rosie and Maddie who he loves and he loves his daily hike in Pogonip and sunrises at Its Beach. Life is daisies for Jasper - thanks for taking good care of him until he found his way to HOME with us. 


Joe and Lilly  

I came to visit the shelter in July with my daughter and we were "just looking".  Of course a couple of days later we adopted two kitties (not siblings), Joe and Lilly on July 17th. They became instant friends and are completely settled into their new home.  Two kittens are so much fun, they play and pounce and cuddle together at nap time. The photo says it all.

Thanks to all of you at the shelter for saving these animals, they bring much happiness to our family.



StellaLuna (aka Dottie)

We adopted our dog Stella aka: Dottie from the Santa Cruz Animal Shelter last month. She's adapted to our home and to our other dogs extremely well. Stella likes to be the queen of the house. She likes to sit in our laps when were watching tv and during the day she plays in our yard with our two other dogs. She loves taking rides on the Gator down to feed the horses at the bottom of the Ranch with her ears flapping in the wind. Stella was a little shy when we first brought her home but is opening up well with us. She's our sweetie who gives us lots of love and always wants to go with us in the car on our adventures into town. We love her! Thank you Animal Shelter! 



In June of 2011, we adopted Julian from the shelter to be a companion for our now 16-year-old female cat named Shirley.  We wanted a younger male cat as we thought that might be easier for her to accept.  Her littermate, LaVerne, had died the month before and Shirley seemed lonely.  We kept them separate for a few weeks them gradually had them spend time together.  It wasn't long before they became friendly and they now groom each other and even eat out of the same bowl at times.  It took a surprisingly short time for all to adjust. We really appreciate the work the shelter does.  Thank you so much for our new family member. 


Luna (aka Secret)

My name is Jennifer and I've been volunteering at the Santa Cruz Shelter for a few years now and for a while I was searching for my soul mate. Coming every week diligently looking at all the cats trying to find the one for me, until about 2 months ago I found a 4 month old kitten at the shelter named "Secret" who was incredibly affectionate and didn’t seem to be bothered by the stressful shelter environment. I immediately fell in love with her but still had some internal fears about adopting her. I took her into foster and decided after a night at home to return her to the shelter.

But suddenly my house was empty and felt very sad and lonely without her and our family didn’t feel complete. I cried the whole day I brought her back, I continued to play with her at the shelter and give her love, still procrastinating day after day until one day she was gone! I freaked out and went to the shelter because once she was gone I realized that she was the perfect cat for us and I couldn’t bear to let her go. Fortunately she had been transferred to AFRP and taken down to PetSmart. Me and my husband immediately drove down to get her and brought her home to live with us!

We've loved her ever since and never once regret getting her! We renamed her Luna after the Harry Potter movies and books! We are so glad we didn’t lose her! She is ours forever! 

     Lil' Pete (aka Memphis)

Lil’ Pete (formerly “Memphis”) wanted to let you all know how happy he is in his new home since we adopted him on August 28 from the Santa Cruz Animal Shelter.

Pete was accepted right away into our feline family, most especially by our Russian Blue, Tyler-Roo, who gently plays with Pete and then cuddles and licks him lovingly. My husband and I are constantly entertained by Pete’s silly antics, his most favorite game being “fetch the mousey” – he meows insistently for me to throw it over and over. We are hopelessly in love with the little guy.

Please extend our heartfelt thanks to your staff and volunteers for the wonderful work you all do to care for the lost and lonely animals in our county and the careful steps you take to make sure they go to safe and loving homes.


I worked with Melissa and adopted 6yr old male, BENNY, cat id# A172234 to be our "Store Kitty" or "Copy Cat" as my store is a print & copy shop.... and I have a picture of us you may use or keep to share his success story!

He is really happy! I got him a cat brush and he purrs and "makes muffins" and loves the back rooms of the store and sit on the window ledge and watch the birds on the back deck, where eventually he will get to go outside to play. He is relaxed and eating and drinking and everybody on my staff loves him so much already.

BIG thank you to Melissa for going the "extra mile" literally, and bringing BENNY here to the store.
Melissa is a great heart and her tears of joy that Benny has a home filled my whole heart with joy.
You are all so fantastic and our community truly appreciates every bit of your time, dedication, and joyful tears of love.

I wanted to give you guys an update on Amy, whom we adopted this past March. Amy has perfectly integrated into our little family. When my husband and I watch TV, Amy sits on her pillow next to us. When we read on the porch, she sits with us and watches hummingbirds. And when it's time for bed, Amy sleeps on her window perch above us. She is also quite the talker, and will meow-chat about almost anything and chuckles at the hummingbirds. She is also quite the guard cat. Since she's joined the household, no neighborhood cats have dared to step onto our deck. We couldn't imagine not having little Amy here to protect us. Thank you!


Grandpa (formerly Puff Daddy)

Two years ago a small Pomeranian was brought to the Shelter so matted that the skin was infected and covered with maggots. He walked with difficulty due to arthritis and was in need of intensive dental work. He had infections in both ears. He was named "Puff Daddy" by the staff and he was about 16-years-old.

I (a shelter volunteer) brought him home one night for a "sleep over". He settled into our house routine immediately. My dog, Charlie slept next to him that first night. The next day I went to the Shelter and filled out the adoption papers and Grandpa, as we call him now,  joined our family for whatever life he has left. He has brought us nothing but happiness. He is a happy, healthy, beautiful 18-year-old dog who loves car rides and the daily trips to the dog park. I adore him.

Staff note: Grandpa lives with shelter alum, Luna, whose story is below.



Domino is doing well so far. He was very playful this morning around 4:00 am. He seems to be ok around the girls (cats). There's one that is a little jealous but hopefully she'll open up quickly. We are planning on coming to the Shelter for the costume contest so we'll see you then. I'm sending you a picture that I thought was so cute. Domino was so concentrated on the movie. From our entire family, take care.

Staff note: Domino was at the shelter for over 2 months before his adoptive family met him at one of our adoption outreach events at PetSmart. Thanks to the collaboration of staff and volunteers, adoption outreach events offer an additional avenue by which adoptable pets can find their forever homes. Congratulations, Domino! Your new family is very lucky to have found you.


Grover (fromerly Boone)

We were looking for a small dog with a good disposition, intelligent, calm yet playful, and a dog we could take places with us.

We found Boone (now Grover) in March, 2011, when looking online. He was listed on your website along with a cute picture. We decided to take a look at him. He won our hearts looking at us wistfully through the kennel he was in. He is just what we wanted and more. He loves people (kids included), most cats, and especially likes to run on the beach and socialize with other dogs. He sits between us in the car on the console looking straight ahead at times, just like he knows where he is going.

He has had his first camping/boating trip this last summer as shown by the pictures, one of which is with one of our grandsons with Grover in the boat.

We treasure our little pet! Thanks, Santa Cruz County Animal Shelter!

Mr. Peabody (formerly Boston)

I adopted Mr. Peabody (originally named "Boston" when the Shelter was in Scotts Valley) over 4 years ago. He is a wonderful dog and I'm very happy to have him in my life.

He is a very congenial fellow, loves to meet other people and dogs. He is very gentle with children and is an all-around great guy! Mr. Peabody loves to hike, travel and chases squirrels in his spare time.

Mr. Peabody keeps me walking and healthy. About 6 months after I got him my doctor asked me what I was doing differently, as I has lost weight and my cholesterol and blood pressure were both lower. For me, the health benefits of having a loving pet showed right away.

I'm very, very happy to have Mr. Peabody in my life.



Poppy is pure pleasure. She has adjusted so very well, it's difficult to imagine her having been without a home. 

She has claimed my bed and a corner of the sofa for her quiet times. When she's feeling playful, which is often, she knows where her basket of toys is. She'll pull one out and bring it to me, and cock her head (who can resist her comical ears!) charming me into squeaking it and tossing it for her

Clearly, she has been loved by someone. Many thanks to the person who brought her to the shelter, to all the shelter volunteers, to my sister, Laurie, and to you for saving her life. My dog, Jazz and I had shared over 16 years together.  Jazz could never be replaced. Poppy offers me a whole new chapter of companionship, love, and good times.

Staff note: Poppy was adopted after having been featured on KPIG DJ Laurie Robert's weekly Pet-o-rama (heard every Thursday morning).  Thank you, Laurie and KPIG for featuring one of the Shelter's adoptable pets every week.



I just wanted you to know that Tracy has adjusted really well to our home and appears to be happy. She gets excited and wags her tail when I get home from work. We still haven't heard a peep from her and she got really freaked out when our other Beagle, Josie began baying at the neighbor's dog! Funny! She was like, "What the heck is that!!" She likes to rest a lot but what would you expect from an old, sweet girl like her? We started her on some supplements from the vet for her arthritis. Hoping that will help her a bit. Well, I just wanted to thank you for making the transition easy for her and us and let you know all is well with Tracy.

Staff note: Tracy was in foster care and was Pet of the Week in the Sentinel, which is where her adoptive family saw her and initially fell in love. Many thanks to Tracy's foster family and all the volunteers that open their homes to animals waiting for their forever homes to find them.


Cruz (fromerly Mulligan of the "soup" puppies)

Mulligan (we call him Cruz) is about to turn 3 in December and we are living in San Francisco and loving it.Cruz has become quite the little runner with me in the morning and loves that we live by Fort Mason which has a ton of grass to play on.He has several little girlfriends that he gets to go camping with and go on hikes with.

Our friend Kieran Collins (collins.kieran@gmail.com) is an artist and she saw this picture of Cruz hanging in our house and decided to paint it and I wanted to brag because he is so darn cute! He is a very good boy. We took the training that his foster family had started and he has flourished. He has the best personality. We can literally sit and watch him for hours and wonder what on earth he is thinking about. Really funny! I hope you get a lot of these love stories. Thanks so much for grooming him into the best dog I have ever owned.



I thought I would share with you how Jordan's first night at home was. He initially was bashful and hid in various places, but that was very short lived. A few hours after coming home, it was bed time. I tucked in my son and made sure Jordan was cozy in his new bed, too. He seemed happy and very mellow given the circumstances. This, I learned, was all an act. Once the lights went out, he began to stalk bedroom to bedroom waiting for our feet to move, at which point he would then pounce out of nowhere to attack! My son let out a few shrieks of laughter and I, too couldn't help but giggle as we hid under the covers anticipating the next attack. Eventually Jordan grew tired of this and decided it was time to sleep. Apparently he thought my head would make a great cushion and decided to lie across my forehead in the most awkward position. Eventually he settled and I awoke (thankfully to the alarm this time) to he and my 4-year-old son cuddling in my bed. My son's first words to me this morning were about how much he loved his cat. Given Jordan's ornery and playful but loving antics, I have no doubt he will fit in perfectly to our family and his new home. Thank you so much for caring for him and providing this opportunity to love and care for this little guy. I definitely have my hands (and apparently bed) full with my two boys!

P.S. He is also very affectionate and sweet, which makes his playfulness that much more appreciated. He has been (and is in this picture) passed out on the oversized couch cushion no doubt resting for tonight's havoc.


Foxy (formerly Junior)

We've talked about adopting a dog since our 15-year-old Boxer passed away in April. While out shopping, my wife and I decided to meet up at the Ace Hardware where CAPE was having an adoption event. I brought our son's dog, "Hope", a Cocker/Cavalier St. Charles Spaniel mix.  Hope and Foxy hit it off very well but we left after a half-hour. Our son was getting married on the 24th and we had too much to do. 

Then my wife called from her car saying I needed to return and adopt Foxy because he has a sweet disposition, lots of energy, and his red color and curled tail reminded her of a Shiba Inu. With Chihuahua mixed in, he looks like a Fox hence the name "Foxy".  We found that Foxy does not bark. Dr. Miller at Scotts Valley Vet thinks he might be part Basenji, the barkless dog from Africa. We think maybe he doesn't have anything to complain about. 

The adoption process was quite painless. It was our first time to the shelter and we found it clean and the staff cheerful even though it was quite busy. But it’s clear that dogs like Foxy show better on the outside at adoption events than in the shelter environment. Now that he is home, we can't believe our good fortune that he wasn't adopted before we found him.

Foxy and Hope have the run of the house and they chase each other from my upstairs den to the fenced brick courtyard off the kitchen to the large, fenced yard off the living room and everywhere in between. When they tire, they crash on our bed or the  back of the living room sofa. From that vantage they can 'supervise' any room of the house or look out the window  

I take the two of them on long walks (at least an hour) as much for my health as theirs. Foxy really enjoys the new smells. We are very happy that Foxy came into our home. We hope some part of his story helps you find homes for other deserving pets.



On February 28, I was called to foster a little Shih Tzu that was abandoned outside the Shelter in a crate after the Shelter was already closed. Luckily, some of the staff were still inside the 5-week-old puppy who barely weighed 3lbs.

When I first saw her, my heart melted. She was sound asleep on the floor next to a big dog looking like a stuffed toy. I brought her home and in less than a week she had won everybody’s hearts. My mother, son and the other dogs accepted her as part of the family. By then I knew she’ll be with us for ever.

I named her Luna and adopted her in April. She is a smart dog, went to puppy school, and just graduated from intermediate at the top of the class. A healthy beautiful dog, loved by every person she meets and a perfect example of how small dogs can be trained!


Annie (formerly Izzie)

We were asked to send some pictures of the dog that we adopted from your shelter (although we question daily who adopted whom). Here is a shot of her enjoying her new back yard.

Her name is now "Annie" (after all, she was an orphan) and I like Poe's poem, "Annabel Lee". 

Thanks for all your help with the adoption.

Butters (formerly Lovey)

I adopted Lovey (re-named Butters) in May. She's been an absolute joy! She's so lovey and cuddly and our Min Pin adores her as much as we do. We go to the beach nearly every day or at least a dog park (there are 2 by our place). I can't even begin to say how much she is loved...and spoiled. (I think all doggies deserve to be spoiled somewhat, for what they give you back.) You'd of died laughing if you could have seen her when she first stepped on sand!

Thanks for the great dog and all the adopter counseling!



Thought you'd like to see how Ethel spent her first night at home - on top of her brand new 5 year old. She's doing great. Thanks for all your help and all you do.

Note from staff: Ethel came to the shelter in less than stellar shape and 10-years-old to boot, an age at which it is much harder to find an adoptive home. Ethel's new family obviously recognized her value and understood the great rewards of adopting a mature pet.


Pepe (formerly Lambert) and Lil Bean (formerly Roger)

Cecelia adopted Pepe over a year ago. Her experience adopting led her to become a volunteer working with the dogs at the Live Oak shelter. In the course of her volunteering, she met and fell in love with an undersocialized little dog named Roger. She fostered Roger to make sure he was a good fit for her home which included not only Pepe but a kitty, as well. Pepe and his feline sibling welcomed Roger with open arms and it was soon clear that Roger was home for good. Cecelia became a repeat adopter (our favorite!) and Roger was christened Lil Bean - a new name for a new beginning.



We met Kira while she lived with a foster family and fell in love with her right away! Despite some abandonment issues and previous not-so-great "small dog" interactions, we were determined to bring her home and help her through it. Though her past experiences with small dogs weren't all great, she did beautifully meeting my 20 lb. mixed breed and they quickly became best buds (they sleep together every night!). My little guy has helped Kira immensely with her dog-to-dog skills and she's constantly improving. Seeing her figure out how to "play bow" and the first time she rolled over to "give up her belly" were monumental gestures that let us know she was comfortable and happy in her new home. We love re-enforcing her training and she's so quick to pick up on new skills! Happy to run forever, she's the perfect jogging companion and we'll be adding an agility set to our yard to help keep her active and entertained. We joke that she's the "good child" in the house and is so well behaved that she'll "ask" to join us on the couch instead of jumping up whenever she pleases. 

She's so quick to learn, so eager to please, and a truly gentle soul. Since adopting her, we've added a senior dog with lax dog-to-dog social skills and Kira has done an amazing job showing her the "doggy ropes." She's even won over people who were afraid of  big dogs! A lot has changed since first bringing her home (the senior buddy, an out of state move, an engagement!) and Kira has been fantastic with all of it. There is constant progress (I'm finally allowed to clip her nails) and we're thrilled to have the honor of sharing our home with this sweet girl. 

Thank you so much to the staff, volunteers, and foster families for helping us give Kira a forever home.


When my husband and I lost Lola, our companion of almost twenty years, we were heartbroken. It took us a half year before we felt able to look for another pet. Then we spotted a kitten, "Unnamed," at the shelter, and we thought Lola had been reincarnated!  Our new adopted kitten is named Lolie in Lola's honor. If reincarnation is too big a stretch, Lola was a local girl, and even though she was spayed, we figure it is likely one of her siblings went on to reproduce and that Lolie is Lola's great, great, great, great . . . niece.  

Lolie makes us laugh every day, whether she's boxing her reflection in the sliding glass door, weaseling under the blankets, or lying in otter position in her bed. 

Thank you to all the wonderful employees and volunteers at the shelter!

I had never had a dog before so when my fiance said, "Lets get one!", I was apprehensive, especially since we live in an apartment. I agreed to go the shelter and look though and we found Adina and I automatically knew she was the one. Adina was so calm and sweet, I had to have her. She is the most spoiled dog and sleeps with us on the bed :) Adina is absolutely the best dog for us. I take her with me to the assisted living center where I work and she is perfect.
(Since this was submitted, Adina's humans have come in and adopted a "brother" for Adina so a family of two has quickly and happily doubled in size!)


Tinkerbelle aka Tink

My sweet Tink kitty. She is beginning to explore other rooms in the house, but only when I've got my two other kitties outdoors. Generally she seems very comfortable in her "safe" room. So far so good! In this photo she is very comfy on her own double bed. =  ]


Blake, Phoebus, and Sixer

The three calves pictured are from a group of five calves rescued from starvation by the Shelter's Animal Control department. The calves had been left to fend for themselves by their owner, devalued because they were males and not of any milk production value.  Blake, Phoebus, Sixer and their two brothers are now living the high life at two California farm animal sanctuaries.

Toby (Formerly Eddie)
Back in February, your wonderful employees and lovely shelter gave us a chance to change the life of one of your puppies. We adopted Eddie (now Toby), a pit bull/lab mix. He is just around 9-months-old and full of energy. My husband is military and we had to move our whole life to Camp Lejeune, NC and I am happy to report that Toby did great. He loves it here. We go to Empire Dog Park at least once a week and he is best friends with my sister-in-law's dog, India, who is a Bassett Hound mix (also a rescue). We are so happy to have him in our lives and I wanted to email you and tell you how completely greatful we are for the trust and opportunity your group gave us. 

Here he is with my cousin on our porch swing.

CEO (Formerly Bonnie)
I adopted Bonnie, now named CEO, in the middle of July. She has adjusted very well since I brought her home. She enjoys her nightly supervised outings, a variety of beds that she can lounge in when I'm at work, as well as a growing assortment of toys and cat things.  She is quickly regaining her cat reflexes, though the idea of jumping up to a chair requires a bit of analysis before she commits to moving upward or opts to lie down instead.
I really want to thank the shelter and all the volunteers and staff for allowing her to hang in there until I could adopt her. I'll send more pics when she has shed a few pounds and can run and jump.


Jay came to the shelter too young to go up for adoption right away and went into foster care with Carol (pictured with Jay) and her husband. Carol brought him back at the end of the foster period and Jay was up for adoption at the shelter for less than 24 hours before Carol came rushing back to adopt him herself. Carol and her husband have now officially joined the club we endearingly call "The Foster Failures", those that fall in love with their foster animals and make them permanent family members.  Carol says Jay is "doing great! He's potty trained and knows how to shake." Welcome to the club, Carol!



Hello everyone! We adopted Livia at the end of July and, man we had no idea what a great dog she was.  She is so sweet and just a great addition to our family.  I can't tell you how much pleasure she has brought in to this house.  She was visited by all our family members and she is very loved.  Thank you so much for helping us find the perfect dog for us - and she is perfect.  Livia is going to have the most amazing life and we are so happy to share that with her.  Thank you again.


Jackson (Formerly Antonetti)

We adopted Jax in January 2011 after the loss of our beloved rat terrier, KC. Replacing the old man was never going to happen, but we are happier than we thought possible with our 8-month old, 70 lb beast of a baby boy! From the moment we walked into the shelter and saw his (then) tiny little head sunk down in a corner while his brothers fought around him, we knew that our home was the one for him. In the 6+ months that we’ve had Jax, he has proven to be one of the sweetest, smartest, most loving dogs either of us have ever been around. Although the day that he finally figures out how big he is may be a long way from our grasp, we wouldn’t trade the big goof for anything in the world! Here’s to all of the other lucky families who took home Jax’s littermates—if they’re anything like him, you must be ecstatic (and tired) like us! Our whole family—Pup included—would love to see/hear how the little big man’s brothers and sisters are getting along…

Thank you, Animal Shelter Staff, for all that you do…As the son of a Monterey Animal Shelter volunteer, I know that although the work you do can be tough…But, the love and respect that you show these animals and their prospective owners is appreciated by us all!


Loretta & Harrison

For those of you who remember, animal control seized a  day-old calf about 2-3 years ago, and then also impounded his mother later to assist in nursing. Here is a recent photo of them chilling in Northern California. The one in the front is the baby...:-)


Harry (Houdini)

Just wanted to let you know that the skittish, stray, fluffy snowshoe, polydactyl kitten that I adopted last fall is doing wonderfully. He is so much fun, gets along with our other pets, and is a great addition to our household. We call him Harry(Houdini). Here is a recent picture of the beautiful boy. He keeps growing and growing, so he'll be a big cat!

Thanks again for all you do for animals.


Patches (formerly Bosco)

We adopted “Patches” formerly “Bosco” at the beginning of this year (2011) from Santa Cruz Animal Services. We fell in love with him when we first saw him. He is part of our family and he is also living with our cats and he gets along with them so well.

Three months after his adoption we also adopted another dog from a rescue place in Sacramento. Her name is “Cheyenne,” and she also now lives with us. They are lovable, sweet, and they are also very smart.

They both go to Doggie Day Camp when we are working, and they both have great social skills with other dogs and the people from the camp also love them. We take them for long walks, to the beach, and they have learned a lot of commands already.  They are both really sweet, and they have brought so much joy into our lives. They are both great ambassadors of their breed.



I want to thank all the really nice people who took care of me while I was at the Santa Cruz Animal Services. I also want to thank them for matching me up with my loving new family. My new family gives me lots of attention, so I know they really love me and I love them too. I hope my other family gets to read this, as I know it was hard for them to let me go and I want them to know that I am truly happy. Thanks again to all the loving people at Santa Cruz Animal Services.


Mojo (formerly Waffles)

We brought Mojo home in August of 2010 after 18 months of searching for just the right dog. We had decided to just wait until the right dog found us, and then I saw "Waffles". His kind eyes spoke to me even through a photo and once we meet him we all knew he was the one! My 11 year old son is Autistic; Mojo is his service dog now and his constant companion. They attend training and therapy together and Mojo is becoming a quick responding helper for his boy. As an interrupt and redirect dog, Mojo helps his boy maintain in stressful environments. Mojo has gone to the movies, visited museums, aquariums, Santa and event the Easter Bunny! He has ridden buses and gone fishing in the ocean! He is experiencing life in way that few others do! Our old man, Skippy, passed two weeks after Mojo came home; even he knew that Mojo was the right one for the job, so he retired gracefully. Thanks to all of you for everything you do for the animals and us humans too!

Nutmeg & Chestnut

We had recently bought a house in the beautiful Santa Cruz mountains, and felt that we needed to share this blessing with animals that needed a home. After a few cats we felt there was a little more room for another soul or two. We adopted two amazing dogs from you! They have filled our lives with so much joy already. I am amazed everyday by how much love they have to give us. The staff at the shelter was so caring, wonderful and kind. We left the shelter feeling fantastic, not only because we adopted two beautiful dogs but because the staff made sure we were taken care of. Thank you everyone for having such a caring heart.


Oliver (formerly Jerry)

I adopted Oliver from the Scotts Valley shelter back in 2007. He had been brought in off the streets of Santa Cruz, was underweight, timid and had a few health issues. I came across Oliver because my cat of 14 years had gone missing; I used to search the shelters in case someone had rescued him. Before long, I fell in love with this little guy, who used to sleep underneath his doughnut bed in his cage, hiding. The first time I dared to "visit" with him in the visiting room, he hopped right up onto my lap. I was afraid it was too soon to become attached to another cat, so I left that day, but couldn’t stop thinking about him and soon came back to adopt him, only to find that another family wanted him!!! But they changed their minds for another cat, fortunately for me, because a few years later, he is the happiest, healthiest, most affectionate and playful cat, the greatest companion ever. He loves to cuddle at my hip and will look me directly in the eyes with such love and sweetness. I still miss my dear cat Zoe, but Oliver is irreplaceable and I’m so glad we found each other! Thanks for all that you do to care for these sweet animals.