October Pawsome Newsletter


Hello Subscriber,

“Change is hardest at the beginning, messiest in the middle and best at the end.”
Robin S. Sharma

Finding suitable placements or outlets for the homeless pets in our care as quickly as possible is our top priority. This is accomplished through adoptions, fostering, or placement with one of our New Hope Partners. With the current volume of strays and owner surrenders coming into the shelter, we must find more efficient ways of caring, managing and making the right connections to get the dogs and cats out of the stressful shelter environment. To streamline our processes and move more pets through the shelter, we have already:

  • Eliminated adoption appointments

  • Standardized $25 adoption fee for all pets

  • Created a no-deposit Pre-Selection process where potential adopters, rescues, and New Hope Partners may pre-select a pet while on a stray hold to more quickly find a new home if the pet is not claimed by an owner

  • Started reaching out to current and former New Hope Partners, as well as newly formed rescues, to find out how MCACC may better support their organizations by making the process easy to pull animals from either shelter location

After considerable thought and feedback from staff, on November 1st, our shelter operations will be transitioning to a team-centric model. The Durango shelter will have five teams and our East shelter will have two (until all services are reinstated at that location). Each of these newly created teams has a blend of talent and experience including sheltering, adoptions, behavior, and alternative placement resources. In addition, each team will manage a designated area of the shelter to allow for more interaction with the animals in their care which ultimately creates more ownership, empowerment, improved communication, and control over their areas. Teams will all have their own scorecard to track their progress and all team members will be cross-trained to have a greater ability to support their shelter pets and each other.

We continue to actively recruit, select and train new staff for several shelter vacancies to ensure that each team is fully staffed. We are also thrilled to continue onboarding more volunteers to help support the teams in their efforts of providing the best care for our shelter pets. Staff realizes the importance of volunteers and the significant role they serve towards their success in providing the best care for the animals, so volunteers may be surprised when staff tries to woo them to support their team! 

We know there will be an adjustment period and many questions still remain. We will continue to work through those and make adjustments as needed. Our one consistent focus will always be to properly and compassionately care for these pets and to responsibly move them out of the shelter into loving homes.

Photo: Banyan A4511565 ready for trick or treating. Photo credit: Heather Reeves

East approval plans


On October 20, the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors approved a construction contract to build a new animal care shelter in the East Valley. The County has set aside $36 million to build a new, modern shelter space in the City of Mesa at Baseline Road and Lewis Drive, on land the County already owns. The new facility will replace the current shelter at Rio Salado and the Loop 101 which is 30 years old and due for replacement. The shelter has consistently housed and treated thousands of homeless dogs and cats each year. It was temporarily closed during the pandemic, but currently cares for about 200 adoptable dogs. Plans to replace it with a more modern animal shelter have been in the works for some time but were delayed due to the pandemic.


Keep the Halloween candy out of reach. Chocolate and sugar-free candy containing xylitol can cause serious problems for our pets. Instead, keep pet appropriate treats on hand.

Costume care. If a costume restricts your pet’s movements, take the obligatory photo and let then remove the costume. If it causes them to feel stressed out, remove it right away. 

ID is a must. Even the most vigilant pet owner can have their pet escape through the open door when trick or treaters arrive. Make sure your pet is wearing proper identification, just in case. (a microchip is even better!)

Pets are curious. Lit candles in pumpkins can be a fire hazard and other decorations may be tempting for pets to nibble on which can cause an upset tummy.

Photo: Kono #A4582154 is available for adoption. 

Pet Safety


Desert Dogs is a monthly collaborative effort between MCACC and three volunteers who are associated with the Arizona Coyotes to help feature and promote MCACC long-timers. A special thanks to our MCACC volunteer dog walker Tina B., for helping with the video shoot and to Matt McConnell, Craig Morgan, and videographer Greg Dunaway!


How on earth has this cutie become our third longest shelter guest? There are so many things to love about Monaco! (#A4583955) He is young, loves to play fetch and splash around in the kiddie pools. Monaco has been very friendly with people and may do well with kids as young as five in his new family. He would do best as the only dog in his home, but doesn't care if you need to pass by other dogs on your walks together. He has personality for days!

October is Pit Bull awareness month. Like any breed of dog, pittie-type dogs come in all personalities and temperaments, and should be regarded as exactly what they are, unique individuals!

This video features these special pups...
Regina Belle #A4619856
Renzo #A4634434
Dowler #A4607039
Alexis #A4594838


Visit our website to find more information about the above dogs (and all our other available shelter pets!) All pets are spayed/neutered, microchipped, vaccinated, and ready to go home with you as soon as today!



In October, our Pet Help program hosted a Community Outreach day where seven volunteers passed out roughly 700 flyers featuring MCACC Pet Help services in a specific targeted area. Pet Help also partnered with Dr. Kelly’s mobile vet for a spay and neuter clinic, where 26 dogs and 6 cats were altered, and 31 of these pets also received microchips! All dog owners received information on licensing and eight dogs were licensed at the event. Through our partnership with One Love Pit Bull Foundation Tag Me Home program, pet owners received new collars and personalized tags. Learn more about Pet Help.

Future Funding for Pet Help Clinics

Spaying and neutering prevent unwanted litters, help protect against some serious health problems, and may reduce many of the behavioral problems associated with the mating instinct. With generous funding of $40,000 from the Nina Mason Pulliam Charitable Trust in collaboration with Fix.Adopt.Save, Pet Help is able to continue facilitating Spay and Neuter clinics for families in need throughout the next year. We are extremely grateful for this life-saving gift that will help hundreds of pets and their families. 



We want to send a huge THANK YOU to Cathy Bissell and the BISSELL Pet Foundation for sponsoring adoption fees for an entire week for #EmptyTheShelters! Our shelter was able to find homes for 21 cats and 256 dogs (a total of 277 pets!), including two of our longest shelter guests.

Thank you to everyone who opened your hearts and homes to a new pet during this event, we appreciate your patience and kindness in helping us help our homeless pets.


Petco Mobile Adoptions
Our partners at Petco have helped us in finding homes for over 75 pets! These monthly onsite adoptions at the Petco at 44th Street and Thomas feature some pets transported from MCACC and other pets ready for adoption from our Foster program. Last Saturday, seven foster puppies found new families to lovingly care for them at our adoption snugglefest.


Love-a-Bull, Adopt-a-Bull 
Last week our shelter was able to celebrate 26 pittie adoptions!! We want to give a shout out to One Love Pit Bull Foundation for offering free "Mutt Manners" training classes and post-adoption support to help all of these good boys and girls settle into their new homes! Handsome Meatloaf (pictured) was adopted and also a very-long time shelter guest Sinatra, got to fall asleep in a real home with a family of his very own after 164 days with us!



“It’s the best volunteer shift!” This is what some of our volunteers tell us about passing out edible enrichment treats to our shelter pets, BUT we are always in need of more. More treats and more volunteers please!  Check out more information including how to fill out an application on our website.

You can also purchase edible enrichment items to keep our pups mentally stimulated and happy during their stay. If you can help, please visit our Amazon Wish List or make a recurring donation. We are grateful for all your support!


Our field team responded to a call about a stray dog, and just like they do for all stray dogs, scanned this little cutie to check for a microchip. Luckily for him, Leo had a microchip registered with his family's contact information! The Animal Control Officer was able to reunite Leo with his family  – and keep him out of the shelter - all thanks to his microchip. He had been missing for 18 months and is now safely home! Thank you to our partners who supply microchips to all pets that leave our shelter, #LovePup FoundationTwo Pups Wellness Fund, and Community Canine Project.

Photo: Kevin and his pup, Leo are reunited.

Leo 02



Spend any amount of time with Jenny (#A4621348), and you just can't help but smile! She may be around ten years old, but she's so silly and full of life - flopping over to roll around in the grass, soaking up back scratches from her adoring friends. We think she may prefer to be the only dog in her new home, but suspect she would enjoy having kids in her new family. Jenny is located at our East Valley Animal Care Center. 



Upcoming Events and Holiday Hours


Both our Durango and East Animal Care Centers will be open for Adoptions Only
on Veterans Day, Thursday, November 11th.

Click each event below to view details.


Nov 13th
PACC 911 Adopt-a-thon


Nov 20th
Eastside Elves Corn Dawg Toss


Nov 20th
Woofstock Adoption event