Iowa animal sanctuary

Iowa animal sanctuary DEFAULT

Animal Rescue League of Iowa Inc.

Our Mission

The Animal Rescue League of Iowa Inc. is Iowa's largest nonprofit animal shelter, caring for many thousands of pets each year. The ARL serves people and pets from across the state of Iowa through its programs, which include pet adoption, humane education, pet behavior training, spay/neuter, animal cruelty intervention and much more.

Learn more about us on our website at

Adoption Policy

The Animal Rescue League of Iowa is located in Des Moines. If you are interested in adopting a pet from the ARL that you see on Petfinder, please go to our official website ( to check if the pet is listed there. If the pet is on our official site it means the pet is still available. For the best chance of adopting, visit the location the pet is at as soon as you can. If you do not see the pet listed on our official site, it means the pet has been adopted.

Adoption process:


Saving Stray Animals

We rely on help from the community to help local animals.

How to Help

Fall in Love — Cat Adoption Special now thru the end of October

Find the feline match for your family during our fall cat adoption special! From now until the end of October, cat & kitten adoption fees are $25 off. Come by our shelter and meet the awesome kitties in our care! Our cats enjoy waiting for their forever homes in free roam rooms instead of individual kennels (unless they prefer them). Spend a bit of time in our free roam rooms & you will see each cat's personality shining through! We are a no-kill shelter, and we test all of our cats for Feline Leukemia to give cat owners peace of mind. If you prefer to browse before you visit, you can see ou...

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We’re Hiring: Part Time Morning Staff, Stray Dog Pickup

We’re Hiring: Part Time Morning Staff, Stray Dog Pickup

Part Time Morning Staff, Flexible Animal Welfare Friends is seeking to fill a part time position for Morning Staff at the shelter in Monticello. The ideal candidate is neat, attentive, and animal oriented. The hours for this position are flexible, with sta...

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Our current longest feline shelter resident has a reduced adoption fee, thanks to a sponsor!

Our current longest feline shelter resident has a reduced adoption fee, thanks to a sponsor!

More than a year at our shelter - June We've had a donor step up to cover part of our current longest feline resident's adoption fee! This donation was made in memory of Dave Calhoun. June, who has been at our shelter since June 2020, is available to the r...

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AWF Lending Library: Books & CDs

AWF Lending Library: Books & CDs

An amazing supporter has donated some animal reference books and CDs to AWF, and so we have established a lending library with these materials! Come by the shelter during open hours if you'd like to borrow any of these great resources:   Books: ...

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Board Members

Board President - Cindy and her husband Tom are both active in their farming operation and own Oak Street Manufacturing in Monticello. They ...

Cindy Bagge

Treasurer - Lisa was raised in St. Louis, Missouri and moved to Iowa in 2013. She began working at Honkamp Krueger in 2015 and is currently ...

Lisa Wigington

Board Member - Candy began volunteering for AWF in 2004 after AWF reached out to the community for volunteers. Candy has been AWF's top fund...

Candy Roberg

Board Member

Mike Batman

Board Member - Jon has been on the board since September, 2019. He was born and raised in Dubuque, Iowa and  has resided  in Monticello for ...

Jon Avenarius

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Announcement: Furry Friends Refuge will be operating as “appointment only”  as we navigate the current health crisis.

If you are wanting to schedule an appointment to meet one of the animals housed at the shelter you can book your appointment online here today!

In an effort to reduce the spread of COVID, Furry Friends Refuge will be operating by appointment only.  If you are interested in adopting a specific animal through our organization, please check the listed location of the animal.  If the animal you are interested in is in foster care (most kittens), please email [email protected] with your phone number and potential animal you’d like to adopt.  Many of our fosters are happy to facilitate their own meetings with kittens through their facebook page Furry Friends Foster Families @FFRfosters

If you are wanting to schedule an appointment to meet one of the animals housed at the shelter you can book your appointment online here today!

If you have questions regarding intake please email [email protected]

Furry Friends Refuge continues to commit to finding forever homes for the animals at our shelter and still very much encourage adopters to come find their new pets.

Others ways to help:
Purchase high priority items from our Amazon Wishlist:

Donate: Our animals will need your financial support to continue to navigate this health emergency:

Foster: Fill out a foster application, make an appointment to pick them up and make a difference in a shelter pets life today.

 — at Furry Friends Refuge.


letter W with cat image for Welcome message

welcome to our website

Our mission is to provide sanctuary and shelter for unwanted, lost and neglected animals; to promote the humane care and treatment of all animals through education and to actively advocate pet population control.

view available cats

A little about us

Organized in
We solely rely on donations and fundraisers
ZERO - we are a volunteer-based organization
10 volunteers that help out with cleaning, feeding, cuddling, adoptions, fundraising
Type of Rescue
We are a no-kill, non-profit organization dedicated to promoting responsible pet ownership
We provide education, and advocate pet population control
Once adopted, cats must not be free-roaming pets

letter C for choosing a cat section


Choosing between a male and a female is not an easy task, as both make wonderful companions. Differences in personality are mostly attributable to the fact that everyone has something unique about them, rather than to male vs. female differences.

view available cats

articles & publications
Teach your dog new tricks with these great apps

Adopting a new dog is an exciting experience. There's nothing like those drool-covered kisses to put you in a good mood. But if you never dipped your toe in the dog-ownership world before, the whole experience can be overwhelming. As a new dog owner, you're likely to be bombarded with lists of dos and don'ts, like foods dogs shouldn't eat, and recommendations for the best tools and techniques to keep your dog happy and healthy.

Transition to a New Home

Keeping them as stress-free as possible not only will help them feel better about the transition, but it will also reduce the likelihood of them exhibiting strange and even aggressive behavior due to fear.

Facts about declawing

Unlike most mammals who walk on the soles of the paws or feet, cats are digitigrades, which means they walk on their toes. Their back, shoulder, paw and leg joints, muscles, tendons, ligaments and nerves are naturally designed to support and distribute the cat's weight across its toes as it walks, runs and climbs.

Common Health Concerns in an Overweight Cat

Concerned about how round your cat has become, or even notice your cat losing weight too quickly? It's easy for people to realize they've gained too much when their pants get a little snug. When it comes to a feline friend, however, it's up to you to watch for warning signs that she's a little too fluffy.

letter A for articles and publications section

Animal sanctuary iowa

Just as we care for our animals in life, we will care for them in death. We will love them forever and grieve their passings taking comfort from the so elegantly written The Rainbow Bridge.

The Rainbow Bridge
inspired by a Norse legend
By the edge of a woods, at the foot of a hill,
Is a lush, green meadow where time stands still.
Where the friends of man and woman do run,
When their time on earth is over and done.

For here, between this world and the next,
Is a place where each beloved creature finds rest.
On this golden land, they wait and they play,
Till the Rainbow Bridge they cross over one day.

No more do they suffer, in pain or in sadness,
For here they are whole, their lives filled with gladness.
Their limbs are restored, their health renewed,
Their bodies have healed, with strength imbued.

They romp through the grass, without even a care,
Until one day they start, and sniff at the air.
All ears prick forward, eyes dart front and back,
Then all of a sudden, one breaks from the pack.

For just at that instant, their eyes have met;
Together again, both person and pet.
So they run to each other, these friends from long past,
The time of their parting is over at last.

The sadness they felt while they were apart,
Has turned into joy once more in each heart.
They embrace with a love that will last forever,
And then, side-by-side, they cross over… together.
© 1998 Steve and Diane Bodofsky. All Rights Reserved.

Hercules' Haven - Animal Sanctuary

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At night, her fire burned in p where, And the devils twisted in her like a spit in long x pits.

Now discussing:

Anything of her clothes. Her sister, squatting, continued to hold my penis and slowly move her little hand along my thick trunk. Turning to my mother's voice, she let go of me and stood up, turning her back to me. Her juicy ass got in the frame.

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