Dog of the Week: Cletus

Julia D Dog of the Week


Cletus is heartworm positive and will begin treatment soon.

Cletus 2Cletus 3This handsome guy is Cletus who flew in all the way from the Lone Star State. His history is unknown but based on his previous condition it’s possible he was used as a hog dog. Hog dogs are quite common in Texas. Picture Old Yeller grouping the hogs together for his boy to get a good idea of what his job may have been and how difficult it is. So some of his past injuries are consistent to cuts and bites received from angry hogs.  Despite having such a tough beginning, he is totally soft on the inside. He is a gentleman to all he meets. Although he’s probably never lived in a house before, he is quite respectful of your belongings.

He is working on walking with a leash and tends to follow his nose when he picks up a scent but walks perfectly when he has his Gentle Leader on. He is working on house training, as this is all new to him.   Cletus is a low maintenance dog meaning he does not excessively bark, does not need a lot of activity, and is not destructive or anxious. He is content laying in the yard enjoying the sunshine or sitting next to you watching television.

If you would like more information on Cletus please email or complete an application HERE.

Cat of the Week: March

Julia D Cat of the Week


March 2March 3Hi, my name is March. I get along with everyone. I like other cats, dogs, and all people including kids. I am very social and loving. I would enjoy living in a home where there are other pets and I will get lots of attention from the humans. I am already spayed, vaccinated, and micro chipped.

For more information about March contact or complete an application HERE.


Dog of the Week: Tony

Julia D Dog of the Week


My name is Tony and I’m a Mastiff mix. I am a very playful puppy. I love playing with toys and other dogs. I could run around in the backyard forever! I may be too much for small dogs and cats since I like to jump and play so much. My foster family doesn’t have cats though and my foster sister is pretty large. I show people love with jumps, but I eventually calm down and my foster mom is helping me with that! I like to cuddle and give kisses too! I love the 4 and 8 year old kiddos that are here too! I have plenty of love to give to my forever home!

If you’d like more information about Tony contact or complete an application HERE.

Tony 2


August Volunteer of the Month

Julia D Volunteer of the Month

Cathy Buenzow is our volunteer of the month for August! Cathy has been volunteering for Last Hope since January when we acquired the Adoption Center. Since then she has been busy! She worked very hard to get the Center ready for animals: Painting, repairing walls and floors, and putting fence up in the yard. Her husband even fixed the furnace for us.
Since then she has been working as a lead dog trainer at the Center and as a foster lead for the dogs at the Center. She recently began working on training some of the long-timers to help them find their forever homes.
In addition to all this, she helps out wherever she can: Transporting animals to appointments, doing meet-and-greets with new families or foster families, and home visits. She also takes home Velvet during the week.
When asked why she likes volunteering for Last Hope this is what she says,
“This has so many answers … but at the top of the list is because it is the most rewarding (and emotional at times) thing I’ve ever done. Not only have I found my passion but I have found a whole new set of friends who have the same passion. All the volunteers at Last Hope are literally amazing! I truly admire each one of them for their compassion and their sheer determination to make life better for each and every one of the animals that come into Last Hope. I love everything I do with Last Hope. One of my favorite things, though, is learning everything I can about the dogs that are staying at the Adoption Center. The more I can learn about their history and personality the better story I can tell to a family who wants to adopt.”
But then she adds, “But here are just a few of the REAL reasons I love volunteering for Last Hope…”
CB 2
And who can blame her? Just look at those faces!
“I had no idea when I started getting involved how much it would suck me in … and not in a bad way. Not only do I wish I had done this earlier in my life, but I wish I could do more. There are so many incredible people at Last Hope who are doing such fantastic stuff.”
Well that applies to you, too, Cathy! Thank you for all you do.

Cat of the Week: Hope

Julia D Cat of the Week


Hope is a sweet, sassy little girl! She loves to play with the other animals in the house and is a big fan of her toys as well. When she’s ready to take a break she will curl up and purr in your lap until she falls asleep.

Hope was found in the middle of the road and rushed to our vet right away. We were afraid she would have some vision loss and some damage to her back legs. But her eyes are healing and she seems to see just fine. She does a little bit of a hop when she runs but she walks just fine and doesn’t let it bother her.

If you want to meet this cute little lady fill out an adoption application on our website HERE.

Hope 2              julia-black1

Roscoe’s Happy Tail

Julia D Happy Tails

Roscoe 2

Gina and her family, Tim, Mackenzie, and Nolan (and their cat, Pete!) adopted Roscoe in May and they couldn’t be happier with their new little pup!

RoscoeRoscoe (formerly Baby Baxter) came from Arkansas and Gina knew as soon as she saw the pictures that she was interested in the the yellow Lab. They went to see Roscoe on May 4th and she said it was love at first sight. They shopped for items for Roscoe and had to wait until the 7th until they were able to pick him up. They thought about him and missed him until they picked him up.
Since then he’s fit into the family in a great way. He loves to be near his new family whether they are walking the yard or working in the garden. Gina says, “I think that being an adopted dog, he knows that and is so happy that he lives in our home. He has a wonderfully sweet, fun personality.”
Roscoe 3It wasn’t much of an adjustment for the family – he just seemed to fit right in and he’s already playing fetch.
“Our life is filled with more love and laughter watching this sweet pup run, tumble, play, and bark.”


Dog of the Week: Piper

Julia D Dog of the Week


Piper 2Piper 3Hi! My name is Piper! I’m sure you glanced at my photos & noticed how adorable I am!  I just love people and all the attention I can get! I love to follow my foster mom around the house. I love to play but when you settle in on the couch you should probably make room for me too! I’m working on all my commands I know “sit” “come” “go to your bed” and “lay down.” I love to go for car rides and walks. When I’m outside I have to be on a tie-out or leash since I like to climb fences. I like to have all the attention and would prefer to be your only pup in the house. My foster mom has a dog I have been getting along with great…but I can be picky about who I’m friends with. I would love to meet you to see if I am the perfect addition for your family!!

Please contact my foster mom at or You can also complete an application HERE.


Barks and Brew 2015!

Julia D Barks and Brew, Event

If you love parties, dogs, live music and summer fun, listen up!  Last Hope Animal Rescue is throwing THE party of the summer at our 2nd annual Barks & Brew.  Mark your calendars for Saturday, August 29th from noon to 6:00 p.m. at NewBo Alehouse in Cedar Rapids, IA. As always, this event is family friendly and dog friendly so bring your kids and your furry friends.  We’ll have beer, non-alcoholic options and food for purchase.  Our live entertainment includes music by Kevin BF Burt, Lunden Reign and The Frank and Ron Show (of the Swingn’ Doors), special emcee guest Kat from 96.5 FM Kiss Country and a Bean Bag Tournament.  The silent auction will have something for everyone in the family, including your four-legged buddies.

Proceeds will support Last Hope’s mission of finding forever homes for Eastern Iowa’s homeless, abused, and neglected animals.  In the last 11 years, we have saved nearly 1500 animals thanks to the support of the community. Be one of the first 200 people to register online and receive a free commemorative stainless steel Koozie and a goodie bag full of fun gifts, exclusive specials and more! Advance tickets, t-shirts, sponsorship opportunities and additional information about the organization can be found at Remember, it’s for a good paws!

Please forward questions about this event to


Cats of the Week

Julia D Cat of the Week

We have a whole group of adorable kittens (with equally adorable names!) that we’re featuring this week:




This handsome gray kitten is Bentley.  He is the most wonderful kitten you will ever meet.  He is fearless and outgoing, funny and lovable, the complete package when it comes to personality.  He loves to run and climb and play with toys.  He is an active kitten but also loves to settle next to you to cuddle.  He and his sister, Ferrari, love to have their pictures taken (just not while wearing a flower on his neck).  Bentley pretty much is the life of the party.  He’s cool, confident and lovable.  He is good with dogs, cats and respectful kids.  He would do best in a family that loves to laugh as he will be the source of most of their laughter.




LexusThis beautiful little white with black and gray patches kitten is Lexus.  She was the runt of the litter and half the size of her litter mates.  Lexus is a delicate little dew drop and can be a little timid in busy environments.  She loves to run and play with her siblings but she also loves to nurture them when they need it.  Lexus is a very nurturing kitten for her age and is a wise old soul trapped in a kitten body.  She is litter box trained like her siblings.  Lexus would do best in a low key home that enjoys a slower pace.  She is good with dogs, cats and respectful children.  She would be perfect as a library or office cat.  She is also an expert snuggler.


FerrariThis is Ferrari, she is a dilute calico.  Ferrari is outgoing and full of life.  She likes to climb (to the top of doors) and explore and she is fearless.  She likes dogs and other cats and respectful children.  She is an active little go-getter and loves to perch on your shoulder.  She also loves to do hair, it may not look like you planned it to, but she loves doing it.  She would do best with a family that likes to be entertained, because she IS NOT a boring kitten.  In her down time she enjoys a good nap next to the person she loves.


LincolnThis handsome orange and white tabby is all boy.  Lincoln is a fun loving, rough and tumble kitten that loves to play and climb but also has a soft side to him.  He can be a bit of a nurturer too if he sees someone in need.  Lincoln is good with dogs, cats and respectful children.  He loves to play but is also an expert snuggler during quiet time.  He would be best in a medium activity level family, one that’s not to hectic but also one that’s not too sedentary either.



This little lady is Porsche.  Like her twin sister, she is a dilute calico.  She is a little more shy and laid back than her sister Ferrari.  While she likes to climb and play, she can be a little more reserved than her siblings.  Porsche is good around dogs, other cats and respectful children.  She would do best in a low-key home with someone who likes to cuddle a lot.  She is content with just lying beside you while you read a good book.


ShelbyShelby is a little white with gray tabby.  She is good with dogs, cats and respectful children.  She loves to climb and play with paper and boxes.  She is a medium level activity kitten.  She is a little more laid back and reserved compared to her siblings and she is an expert cuddler.  She would do best in a low key to medium activity level family.  She would not thrive in a high stress level family.  She is litter box trained, as all her siblings are.

If you are interested in any of these kittens, email or complete an application HERE.


Meet Our Adoption Center Lead Volunteers!

Julia D Adoption Center

Dana Hartman

Dana has been volunteering with Last Hope since March. She works as a lead volunteer which involves cleaning the dog kennels, playing with the dogs, providing food and clean water, training new volunteers, and even laundry and dishes, too! She also helps with micro chipping events on Saturdays and is foster mom to a male adult cat and a momma cat and her six kittens.

To new volunteers she offers the following advice: Come with an open mind and positive attitude and don’t get discouraged. It’s hard work but very rewarding!

When asked what she likes about volunteering at the center she says, “Everything!!  It’s all very rewarding.  If I’m having a bad day when I arrive, I always leave happy.  You definitely create a bond with the animals and I’ve shed a few tears when they’ve been adopted, but it’s rewarding to know that I was an important part of their lives while they were in their temporary housing.  We also have the best volunteers.  I’ve meet some awesome people.  Shout out to Cory Canfield….he was the first one who greeted me at the desk for orientation and also trained me.  He’s a very valuable asset to Last Hope!”


Cory Canfield

Cory began volunteering for Last Hope in February and he is a lead volunteer and volunteer coordinator. He helps care for the dogs at the adoption center, organized the center, gives shots, microchips animals, and pretty much whatever else needs to be done.

“We are always looking for volunteers. If you are interested and have the passion for animals like we all do, don’t hesitate. Be a dog or cat’s whole life while they are searching for their forever family.”


Candace Little

Candace started volunteering by helping open the new Adoption Center. She cleaned and painted before the center opened and now she is a lead, she fosters dogs, and she makes bandanas, crafts, and treats to sell at the markets. She had recently moved back to Iowa and the opening of the center was perfect timing for her because she knew she wanted to volunteer in some way with animals.

This is what Candace has to say to potential volunteers: “Everyone can volunteer at Last Hope in some way.  I think many people are scared to commit to volunteering because they don’t know if they will have the time or they are unsure if they will be able to handle the dogs. We have so many thing we need help with! Even with only an hour or two, someone can make a huge difference. In addition, there are a lot of things that can be done from home. If anyone is interested in volunteering, please sign up! We always could use help with cleaning/upkeep of the adoption center, office work, transporting animals, making crafts and dog treats to sell at events, working at our booth during the events, fundraising, helping go through and call references for applicants, walking the dogs at the Center, fostering cats and dogs, taking care of the cats and dogs at the center, and many other things to help Last Hope run smoothly. There is a place for everyone to help at Last Hope and any volunteering is greatly appreciated by all!”

Candace loves volunteering for Last Hope; from playing and spending time with the dogs, to helping families find their new family members through fostering.


Cathy Buenzow

Cathy started volunteering in January when the call went out to help get the Adoption Center opened.

She does pretty much whatever needs to be done at the center; from lead dog care shifts or training new volunteers to mowing the lawn. She’s also the foster lead for all the dogs that live at the Center so she helps review applications, does meet and greets, and even some home visits.

She says she truly loves everything she does at the Center, but she particularly loves getting to know each of the dogs and being able to introduce them to their potential families. She likes to learn as much as she can about each dog so she can tell their stories to the families.

To potential volunteers she says, “Volunteering at the Adoption Center, whether washing dog dishes or feeding the animals, is all extremely important and it takes many people and many talents to ultimately get every dog or cat we have a loving home.  I have never in my life met a more passionate group of people as the volunteers at Last Hope. They are truly an amazing and compassionate group of individuals that all have the same goal in mind.”


Nicole Lesmeister

Nicole began volunteering for Last Hope in 2009 as a foster parent. At the Adoption Center she makes sure all the cats are cared for and there is coverage for the cat care shifts. She also holds a monthly open house to help the cats find their forever homes.

She says whether you help on a regular basis or just once in a while, and whether you take care of dogs, clean, or help file papers, every little bit is important and we couldn’t have the Center and help all the animals we do without each and every volunteer. No matter what you do or how often you do it, it matters in a big way.

Nicole says, “The Center is a really unique volunteering opportunity. The animals have come in for different reasons and they are completely dependent on the volunteers who come in to care for them and provide them with love and affection. We get to watch them heal and grow and find homes they deserve. I enjoy it when a dog or cat that came in scared is now excited to see me and greets me with hugs. I feel like I regularly get the opportunity to meet a new special dog or cat knowing that they have been saved and others will be, too. I am also continually inspired by the hard work and dedication that the volunteers put unto the Center.”


Sandy Lacklore

 Hello!  My name is Sandy I have been volunteering with Last Hope since 2013 when I started fostering dogs.  Now I’m currently still fostering while working shifts taking care of all the pooches that live at the adoption center.  I absolutely love working with all the dogs…even the ones that can be little stinkers sometimes!!

We have the best volunteers at Last Hope!  Everyone is so caring & has the best interest of the animals in mind.
Sometimes it’s hard doing what we do since we get so attached to everyone; but there is no better feeling than knowing that you helped save that animal’s life and to see them find their forever home!!
Lindsey started volunteering for last Hope in April and is currently working the noon shift lead during the week. She says, “Taking care of dogs is a hot, dirty job, but watching a scared, neglected dog some out of its shell and slowly begin to trust you is such an amazing thing to witness.”
She loves feeling like what she does makes a difference in the lives of the dogs at the shelter. She loves going into Piper’s and Boomer’s room and seeing them wag their tails and search for a toy to bring her, and Clover grabbing her ball when she takes her out, or the kisses Lacy gives. “It is such a little thing, and it takes so little of me, but it makes a huge difference in the lives of the dogs.”
Thank you to all the leads who shared their stories! If you would like to volunteer to work at the Adoption Center (or at events) please complete a volunteer application HERE.