Helping pets walk tall with promotional leashes
When it was founded in 2004, Gateway Pet Guardians focused on feeding, rescuing and rehabilitating stray dogs and cats in the East St. Louis area. Since then, its goals have shifted and expanded to help low-income pet owners care for their pets with food, spaying and neutering services, veterinary care and pet supplies, including promotional leashes.
Taking care of furry friends
Gateway Pet Guardians refers to the East St. Louis area as a “resource desert” for pet owners. “About 45% of the people here live at or below the poverty line,” said Community Director Janet Alderson. “There’s not a single veterinarian in the area, and there are no big box stores and no pet supply stores.”
In addition to rescuing about 300 animals per year and helping residents care for their pets, Gateway Pet Guardians also decided in 2012 to address the homeless pet problem at its source.
“We started a spaying and neutering program, and we’ve seen a drastic decrease in stray dogs because of that,” Alderson said. They also hold vaccination clinics a few times a year, vaccinating about 100 animals at session.
Gateway Pet Guardians will soon be moving into a former school, turning it into a resource center that provides education and services for the 65,000 nearby residents. “We’ll have everything there from a grooming station, to a pet food pantry, a wellness clinic for vaccines, and a pet adoption center where residents can adopt pets,” Alderson said.
Promotional leashes lend a helping hand
In addition to vaccine clinics and food, Gateway Pet Guardians has been offering promotional leashes, similar to the Pet Leash, to pets and owners in need. The organization received the leashes through the 4imprint® one by one® program after seeing pet owners secure their pets with whatever means they could find.
“People bring their pets, even on shoe strings or an electrical cord because that’s all they have, Alderson said. “Being able to give people a simple leash makes them proud to be able to walk their dogs.”
A note from Cheryl:
Furry friends provide us with so much joy. We’re grateful for the opportunity to help Gateway Pet Guardians keep animals safe and give their owners a sense of pride with a grant of promotional leashes. For more information on our grant program, visit onebyone.4imprint.com.