The Animal Pad, a non-profit all breed dog rescue based in La Mesa, recently won two awards from pet supply retailer Petco totaling $ 11,000. It was one of many animal rescue and welfare groups making money through the Petco Love Stories campaign.

Petco Love Stories are stories from local residents about the pets they saved and how the animals made a difference in their lives. The San Diego Humane Society and the SPCA received $ 11,000 for articles submitted by the San Diego branch and the Escondido branch. Shelter to Soldier Inc., based in Oceanside, received $ 6,000 for two stories, and The Animal Pad received $ 1,000.

Once these initial grants were awarded, animal welfare organizations were eligible to win up to an additional $ 25,000 through the People’s Choice competition. The public voted on petcolove.org/lovestories for their favorites. Over 20,000 pet adopters have taken part in the annual campaign since 2013 and shared how their pets have changed their lives.

The Animal Pad was selected as one of five People’s Choice Awards winners and received an additional $ 10,000 in funding. Their entry described Oliver, a dog with a spinal injury who was taken in and then adopted by a school counselor. Through his work, Oliver is now helping the students to flourish as a therapy dog ​​for the students in the school.

“Oliver changed my life when I least expected it,” his “mom,” Missy Waters, head of The Animal Pad care team, said in an email. “He makes every day better for me, my students and so many others. It’s hard to be unhappy when Oliver and his cute diaper ass are around. The fact that her story won The Animal Pad $ 10,000 to help them continue doing what they do best – saving unwanted and broken dogs – is beyond amazing, and I am truly so grateful.

See their story at https://petcolove.org/love-story/oliver. See all the stories at https://petcolove.org/lovestories.

“Everyone at The Animal Pad was thrilled to win the initial grant and beyond, thrilled to go on to win the Audience Award,” said Anna Jackson, director of fundraising at The Animal Pad, in a statement by E-mail. “It really speaks to not only the breadth of our volunteers and supporters, but also the power of the underdog. At TAP, we take great pride in welcoming dogs like Oliver, dogs that are often overlooked but in desperate need of a second chance. We will never stop fighting for these dogs. $ 10,000 means a lot to our all-volunteer, donation-based organization and will help us welcome so many new dogs to the streets. Thanks to everyone who voted! “

The Animal Pad focuses on saving dogs in high mortality shelters and on the streets of Mexico. The animals receive veterinary care, are placed in foster homes and then are adopted into permanent homes. The association recently turned its attention to street dogs in Mexico, which receive very little help. Animal Pad has developed an extensive rescue network in Baja California and also takes animals from a sister shelter in Ensenada when funds permit. The Animal Pad is located at 4620 Avocado Blvd., La Mesa. Visit https://theanimalpad.org.