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2017 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Animal Rescue League of Iowa, Inc.

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Animal Protection & Welfare, Animals, Veterinary Services

Mission: The Animal Rescue League of Iowa''s mission is to promote animal welfare, to encourage and strengthen the human/animal bond and to prevent the overpopulation of animals. The ARL''s mission is accomplished through its numerous programs including pet adoption, on-site spaying and neutering, humane education and pet behavior training and counseling. The ARL is the Des Moines area''s only shelter that never turns away an animal in need.

Programs: The ARL depends on private funds to provide services such as humane education; animal assisted therapy; pet behavior counseling and training; animal rescue and adoption; animal abuse intervention and prevention; and resident pets. These programs, together with the ARL's on-site spaying and neutering program, work to reduce the number of homeless pets in Iowa. The ARL also works to pass laws that improve the lives of all animals, including livestock and wildlife. The ARL receives no state, federal or United Way funding to fund its programs.

Community Stories

5 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I started working at the ARL a year ago, and even though their reputation proceeded them, I have witnessed an increased commitment to the welfare of homeless pets and the services to communities who might be at risk to relinquish their pets. Implementing programs for owners in resource deserts help keep their pet(s) in their home have made a big impact in our intake and the amount of money spent on relinquished animals. I am continually impressed with the innovative actions to enhance the human animal bond in central Iowa and will continue to build partnerships in the community to support our mission.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

We have gotten 3 of our cats from the ARL, and they are the best place ever for adopting & rescuing animals. Each year gets better and better, too, with their live release rate statistics and rescue stories. Plus, each animal you adopt comes microchipped, fixed, and up-to-date on shots & de-worming, which saves a lot of stress and money for bringing them home. The staff cares so much about the animals and the facility is so nice compared to others, it's no wonder they receive so many awards for being great!

Review from Guidestar


Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The ARL of Iowa has continuously made strides in improving community education/awareness, creating programs to ensure long-term/permanent adoptions, and innovative fundraising/community support activities. If I could take on another animal, this would be the first place I'd go to and would donate to in the DSM area.

1 Heidi K.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I volunteer with several organizations as well as serve as President for a local animal program in my area. Everything I know about the ARL has lead me to believe this is a top notch facility that other animal shelters should replicate. From the design of the building, all the way to it's marketing practices, I really admire the ARL!

1 Sara52

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 4

As a founding member and past board president of another nonprofit in the community, I've worked closely with ARL over the past few years to improve conditions for pets and their people in central Iowa. ARL has partnered with us in a number of programs to collaborate and cooperate for the best all-around results. Their staff members and management are thought leaders and community leaders, walking the talk. I look forward to being involved with them in the years to come as we all work together to make Iowa one of the best places for animals in the country.