SSPA Newsletter
In This Issue
Great News! | Support Finn | Happy Tails | Meet a Team Member | Adopt Us
Our Latest Update
SSPA's relationship with the Stockton Animal Shelter continues to grow!

Our behavioral staff and volunteers are there at least three days a week, working with dogs individually and running playgroups to help them stay content and find forever families.

And we've added a new way to first meet the pups: You can now set up virtual Zoom meet-and-greets with Stockton shelter dogs and SSPA’s behavioral staff.

We’ll answer your questions and show you the dog you’re interested in up close and personal to help you make an informed decision when bringing a pup home.

Appointments are available Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays!

To get started, complete an adoption or foster application today!
Fosters Needed

This puppy is such a cutie!

She’s about 9 months old and is social, very sweet, playful and young!

And she’d love nothing more than a loving foster to take her in and show her how great life can be!

We can easily arrange shelter transport for you if you're not in the area.

Ready to bring her home? Fill out a foster application today.

Funny name, right? But this boy sports some of the cutest pants around!

He's one lovable guy who's cute as can be and loves his ball! SSPA's director calls him "a rock star"!

And he's ready to come home with you!

We can easily arrange transport from Stockton to your home if needed.

Ready to bring him home? Fill out a foster application today.
Help SSPA Save More Lives
Help Cover Puppy Finn's Next Surgery
This puppy has had such a rough beginning to his young life.

He arrived at the Sacramento County shelter clinging to life after being hit by a car. The amazing medical team performed multiple surgeries and efforts to stabilize him, saving his life. For three days it was touch and go, and the only thing that truly seemed to comfort him was being held. Folks were happy to oblige and help him feel comforted.

Once he stabilized and started to walk on his own, he landed with a fabulous SSPA foster, who gave him plenty of love and physical therapy. His foster mom named him after one of the greatest heroes of Irish mythology, Finn MacCool, an intrepid warrior with mystical, supernatural powers. The perfect name for such an indomitable spirit. He is now in another wonderful foster home.

Unfortunately, he needs another surgery on his right rear leg. Teaching Everyone Animals Matter is raising the $4,800 it will cost to give this boy a happy, normal, pain-free life.

If you can give any amount, please donate! Every dollar counts to make this amazing boy's life the best it can be!

Thank you for all of your support!
Happy Tails
Ava is loving life with her family!

For those who don’t remember this resilient gal’s story …

Ava came to our team with some severe medical issues and eventually had to undergo a 3.5-hour surgery to remove a kidney and save her life.

After her surgery, her amazing medical foster, whom we we featured in our last newsletter, stepped in to help her recover.

Just look at Ava now!

Her adopter, Tina, said: “Things are really good. Ava is one of the best dogs I’ve had. She is so easy going. Hates rain though and she got to see snow. We all really love her.”

This is what our mission is all about - attaining happy tails for our dogs and ensuring every pup knows they matter! It's also another example of fostering saving lives!

A huge thank you to her foster and to Tina and her family for giving Ava the life that she’s always wanted!
Bunny (known as Arnald at the shelter) was adopted over the weekend!

His fosters, Brooke, who happens to be our newsletter editor's sister, and Kenji, just couldn't give him up!

They said, "From the first moment he leapt into our arms, Bunny has brought infinite amounts of love and goofiness into our lives. Bunny reminds us to step back from work and the heavy things in life by nestling into us when we are stressed and snuggling for an eternity when we are down. Thank you SSPA for bringing a bundle of joy into our lives. We love you Bunny!"

Yet another adorable example of "Who rescued whom?"

Thank you, Brooke and Kenji, for fostering and adopting!
Ranger, our beloved boy with the cow-like coat, was adopted this weekend! He's pictured here with adopter Braulio!

His awesome foster, Neelima, said: “Francisca (one of the adopters) likes to cuddle with her pets, and Ranger loves to be cuddled. I believe Ranger found a very loving home!”

Francisca said, "He was supposed to be shy at first, but he smelled the entire apartment, and went directly to our bed 😂"

Sounds like he made himself right at home! Perfect!

Congratulations, Ranger, and thank you to both his foster and adopters!
Malachi, formerly Fabio, found his family!

He was adopted into a family of nurses and has two kids to keep him company!

His adopter Nicole says, "We are loving Fabio (re-named Malachai). He has fit right in with our family and is loved by all."

Congratulations, Malachai, and thank you to his adopters!
Connie was just adopted Sunday.

Look how excited she was to find her family! Her face says it all!

Her foster, Hope, said “My heart is full” after Connie found her home with a wonderful couple.

Congratulations, sweet girl - and thank you to her foster and adopters!
Don’t forget: We offer post-adoption counseling to help with your new dog’s transition into your home! Email! You can send "Happy Tails" updates there as well!
Get to Know a Member of the SSPA Team!
In this series, we'll feature one of our team members each week!
Q&A with Volunteer Hannah Moon

How long have you been part of SSPA and what inspired you to be part of the team?
I believe I started volunteering with SSPA in April 2018, so it will be three years in April. Boy, how time flies.

What inspired me to be a part of the team was actually my first adopted dog, Luna. When I moved to Sacramento after graduating from college, the absolute first thing I wanted to do was get a dog. I had had dogs (and a variety of other animals) my whole life until college, and I had not been allowed to have pets at my college house, so I was so excited to have a furry companion again. My roommate, boyfriend and I walked through the shelter a few months later, with the agreement that we would make no decisions that day on who I was taking home, wanting to be really intentional and not get caught up in the moment (whoops). Then, we passed the kennel of the absolute cutest little pittie thing, and deep down I knew I was done for when she made eye contact with me. After getting to meet her, we were hooked, and we drove home with her that afternoon. We bought all of the supplies and started our journey together. I was in love.

Then, our first walk happened, and she spotted another dog across the street and absolutely freaked out. I had never seen anything like it before - scrambling her feet and making this awful sound. We call it her "scream bark." Not fun. I was freaked out, but I started doing research. I knew she had been in playgroups at the shelter, so I was so confused by her reaction. We determined that she was leash reactive, and learning about that and getting some specific training helped us manage, but I wanted to understand more. I also wanted to give back to the group that clearly had to know stuff that I didn't, as they had to have managed this stuff before, and I just really wanted to learn in a hands-on environment. It was selfish, really - I wanted to glean as much as I could from the more experienced people so that I could better serve my dog. So I offered my very limited experience with photo editing, then went through the training so I could help run dogs, and I just tried to keep my ears open and pay attention and learn each time I was out there. That's when I really started to care about SSPA's mission, especially after getting to watch and understand how playgroups worked and what a benefit they were for the dogs who could participate. The other team members were so dedicated and helpful and knowledgeable ... truly inspirational. That's when I fully decided to be part of the team, and I'm so glad I did.

What’s the best thing about being a member of #TeamSSPA?
Honestly, for me, it's the experience with all different kinds of dogs. The change in my dog handling from Day 1 to now is wild. The experience that I have now allows me to be more confident entering most situations, and I can see how that affects how certain dogs feel about me. Of course, there's still so much I don't know, but it has been so rewarding to look back and see the progress I've made. The last year or two, I have worked basically exclusively as a runner for the photo team, which has meant that I ended up handling a lot of dogs who had not been in the shelter for very long. Some of the best days were when there were dogs that clearly just needed some comfort and time to allow themselves to be leashed, when they just needed you to sit in the kennel with them for 10 minutes with some treats, gaining their trust, helping them come out of their shells. Even though it could be a bit time-consuming, there's just nothing like it.

Also, how could you not like constantly getting to meet new, adorable dogs. 
What moment during your time with SSPA is most memorable for you? 
This is a great question. So many come to mind. The first thing that I thought of was during a photo session. We had pulled this dog whose head was seriously concave - it seemed like she had clearly been malnourished for a substantial period of time. We felt awful and were just trying to make her happy. I went to give her a treat, and she set up a high-five (click on the image to watch the video). I was bewildered. It was so clear that this dog had had a rough life, but someone at some point had trained her. I was heartbroken for her that she had likely been loved at some point but had found herself at the shelter, but it was also so comforting knowing that some family was going to get such a wonderful pet.

What do you hope to help SSPA accomplish in the future?
I cannot wait for the new location to be up and running, so I look forward to the impact that will make. In SSPA endeavors, I'm just happy to do whatever the team needs of me whenever I can.

What is your favorite thing about your pets?
Their compatibility with each other. There was a time when I thought no dog would be a good companion for mine (as noted before, she has some quirks). She is rambunctious and absolutely desperate for other dogs to play with her whenever she wants to play, and she is very bad at understanding/listening to other dogs when they clearly communicate that they aren't interested. There is just not a more perfect dog for her than our foster fail, who not only tolerates, but enjoys, her bothering him. He legitimately won't play with toys unless she specifically shoves them in his face. It's a match made in heaven (aka by Delyse).

Final thoughts?
I am so grateful to be a part of SSPA, and I look forward to what this team will accomplish.
We'd love to share your story! Have your own SSPA story to share and/or want to be interviewed for SSPA's newsletter? Email us at!
Adoptable Dogs

This boy came to the shelter in bad shape. He was an outdoor dog, chained in a kennel his entire life.

With the help of our awesome SSPA team and his foster, he's developed more confidence and learned that life can be good.

Let us tell you - this boy is resilient! He had owners who didn't show him an ounce of compassion, but now he's found a way to trust and even show his silly side.

Understandably, he can take a bit to develop trust, but once he does, he's marvelous!

He's low maintenance, mellow and easy to please, and has successfully lived with cats and other dogs!

Ready to bring him home? Apply to adopt him.

This cutie pie is not only handsome as can be, he’s a cuddle pro!

He 's a snuggler extraordinaire, who also happens to have a fun and silly side and plenty of energy to keep up with you!

While he’s lucky to be in a wonderful foster home, he’d love to find his forever home!

(Please note: He prefers a home without other pups or cats.)

Ready to bring him home? Fill out an adoption application.

Eli is a beyond-adorable, soft and sweet nugget. He came into the shelter terrified and shut down.

Now in foster care, with lots of positive reinforcement and a couple of well-rounded female dogs, he has really come out of his shell. Eli has the heart of a sweet, eager-to-please, playful and a bit mischievous puppy inside a cautious exterior.

His ideal forever family will understand that his shyness is due to his lack of proper socialization as a young dog. He’s looking for a family who will help him continue to grow into a balanced, happy dog. He'd love a playful, confident female dog in his future home!

Ready to adopt?! Fill out an adoption application!

This adorable dude is a volunteer favorite!

He takes a little time to warm up to people, so he’s looking for a patient and understanding family.

He could be paired with a well-matched female dog in his new home.

Once you gain his trust, he does zoomies and flops over for belly rubs!

Ready to bring him home?! Fill out an adoption application.

This young guy has a wonderful smile that brightens up everyone's day!

He'll also capture everyone's attention with his gorgeous looks!

While he's enjoying time in foster, he'd love to find his forever home.

Ready to adopt?! Fill out an adoption application!

It's hard to get much more adorable than Duke and his huge grin!

He's one joyful dude who loves every minute of being around his foster folks!

That face brings smiles to everyone he passes!

Ready to bring this awesome guy home?! Fill out an adoption application.

Sadie is one stunning girl who's ready to come home with you!

She currently lives in a foster home with cats, and is loving being an indoor family pet!

What would make her even happier is finding a forever home!

Ready to adopt?! Fill out an adoption application!

This young guy with the super squishable face is ready to find his forever home!

He's a shy boy who needs a family who will give him time to warm up and help build his confidence.

Ready to add him to your family? Fill out an adoption application today.

Willow is one gorgeous girl!

She can be a bit shy at first, but she is super sweet and mannerly.

She has participated in SSPA playgroups with gentle males.

Ready to give this sweetheart a loving home?! Fill out an adoption application!
Prior Newsletters
Did you miss our previous newsletters? You can check them out here.