History of Pet Project Foundation

The history of Pet Project Foundation’s animal rescue efforts span almost 30 years. In the early 1980s, a group of concerned San Clemente animal lovers met with city officials to determine how to best provide care for the lost and abandoned animals in their city. Out of this meeting the first San Clemente Animal Shelter was born through a partnership between volunteers - who called themselves FOSCA (or Friends of San Clemente Animals) - and the city. The city provided a trailer to shelter the animals as well as animal control services while the volunteers ran the shelter and paid for all food and medical care needed. The initial operation was run on a shoestring budget with volunteers relying heavily on donations from the public to help keep the shelter in operation.

These dedicated volunteers always had one primary goal in mind - to build a shelter that from the ground up was designed to be a comfortable, pro-humane haven for homeless animals. In 1996, their dream was realized with the opening of the current location of the shelter. At that time, the city of Dana Point also entered an agreement to begin sending its homeless pets to the shelter, and thus was born today’s San Clemente-Dana Point Animal Shelter.

In 2005, FOSCA merged with the Animal Rescue Foundation of Dana Point to form the Pet Project Foundation. The Pet Project Foundation carries on the mission of both these longstanding animal welfare groups with their continuing support of the shelter.

A Pro-Humane Approach

Here are just some of the functions that PPF funds at the shelter:

  • Medical care for all shelter animals, including spaying and neutering all animals
  • Food, including special diets and treats
  • All bedding and toys
  • Significant portion of kennel attendant and dog trainer salaries
  • Capital improvements to the shelter facility
  • Subsidizing the cost of spay/neuter programs in our communities

From the beginning, PPF and its ancestor organizations have partnered with the San Clemente-Dana Point Animal Shelter to ensure the shelter maintains a pro-humane approach - that is, no adoptable animal will ever be euthanized at our shelter.  Our volunteers generously donate over 25,000 hours each year to walk dogs, socialize cats and rabbits and handle a host of administrative tasks.  PPF also contributes over $350,000 each year to provide care for the lost and abandoned animals who find their way to the shelter.  Together, these donations of time and money are the means by which a pro-humane approach can be maintained.

The San Clemente-Dana Point Animal Shelter has been named "Best Place to Adopt a Pet" by Orange Coast Magazine.  However, we’re most proud of the extremely high live release rates for all our shelter animals - in fact, we’ve achieved some of the highest rates of any shelter or rescue group in the country.