Frequently Asked Questions

If you've got questions, we've got answers!

Report Animal Abuse & Neglect

In Illinois:

Gateway Pet Guardians has a team of trained animal investigators to look into reports of animal abuse and neglect in East St. Louis, Alorton, Washington Park, Caseyville and Centreville, Illinois.  If you are reporting a case of animal abuse in one of these areas, contact us.

If you are reporting outside of these area in St. Clair County, please contact St. Clair County Animal Control:

8:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.
Monday through Friday
618-235-0587

In St. Louis:

To report animal abuse and neglect in St. Louis, contact the Humane Society of Missouri at (314) 647-4400 and visit their website to be prepared with the information they will need.

You can also contact Stray Rescue of St. Louis at 314-771-6121 Ext. 232.

For information about animal care, or, if you suspect animal abuse, you can also contact the St. Louis County Department of Health’s Animal Care and Control program at (314) 615-1777.

Can I surrender a pet to Gateway Pet Guardians?

Gateway Pet Guardians’  is a closed-admission shelter.  We only accept owner surrenders from East St. Louis, Alorton, Centreville, Caseyville and Washington Park, Illinois.

Our mission is to make as great an impact as we possibly can on the animal population within our Metro East feeding route. Due to resource and financial constraints, we must stay true to our mission and the animals on our route that we visit each day. Each time we accept a stray from outside our service area, it means we are turning away a stray on our feeding route. In order to remain true to our mission, it is our policy not to accept owner-surrendered animals or strays that are not in our service area.

I can’t afford my pet. Can I surrender it?

Gateway Pet Guardians’  is a closed-admission shelter.  We only accept owner surrenders from East St. Louis, Alorton, Centreville, Caseyville and Washington Park, Illinois.

Our mission is to make as great an impact as we possibly can on the animal population within our Metro East feeding route. Due to resource and financial constraints, we must stay true to our mission and the animals on our route that we visit each day. Each time we accept a stray from outside our service area, it means we are turning away a stray on our feeding route. In order to remain true to our mission, it is our policy not to accept owner-surrendered animals or strays that are not in our service area.

Resources for financially constrained pet owners:

Bi-State Pet Food Pantry - To ensure that pets stay with their families, they provide temporary food assistance to those in need in the greater St. Louis community.

If you live in our service area, Gateway Pet Guardians can also provide your dog with a dog house and straw.

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Resources for low-cost spay/neuter:

It doesn’t have to be expensive to have your pet spayed/neutered, and there’s lots of reasons why you should. Gateway offers low-cost spay and neuter services for residents in our service area. If you live in East St. Louis, Washington Park, Centreville, Caseyville, or Alorton, Illinois, you may qualify for our program.  In addition to spay/neuter, we can also offer low-cost or free vaccinations and microchipping.  Visit our spay/neuter page for more information. 

If you live outside our service area, see our “Low-Cost Spay/Neuter Options below.

Start your search for a lost or found animal at STL Lost Pets.
A collaboration between Animal Protective Association, St. Louis County Animal Care and Control and the Humane Society of Missouri brings another useful tool to our region.

Our Vet Partners

Gateway Pet Guardians is constantly building working relationships with vets in the St. Louis area to provide affordable care for our rescue animals. Below is a list of veterinarians used by Gateway Pet Guardians for our fosters and adoptive parents:

St. Louis:

Hillside Animal Hospital

5325 Manchester Avenue,
Saint Louis, MO 63110
(314) 645-2141
Hillside Animal Hospital

Rock Road Animal Hospital

9418 St Charles Rock Road
Saint Louis, MO 63114
(314) 429-6666
Rock Road Animal Hospital

Yorkshire Animal Hospital

Dale Diesel DVM
8088 Watson Road
Webster Groves, MO 63119
(314) 843-2394
Yorkshire Animal Hospital

Metro East:

Lashley Animal Hospital

120 North Illinois
Swansea, IL 62226
(618) 234-4584
Email: info@lashleyanimalhospital.com
Lashley Animal Hospital

4 Paws Animal Hospital

2006 West Highway 50
O’Fallon, IL 62269
(618) 632-4615
4 Paws Animal Hospital

Belleville Animal Clinic

1600 N. Belt East
Belleville, IL 62221
(618) 233-5720
Belleville Animal Clinic

Low-Cost Spay and Neuter Resources

Spaying and neutering your pets is one of the most important steps a pet owner can take toward making their dog or cat’s life a long and healthy one.

 Low-Cost Spay/Neuter Options in St. Louis

BARC St. Louis: BARC’s Furry Fix spay/neuter program is open to anyone who is on government assistance or can show proof of financial need, regardless of residency.

Carol House Quick Fix Pet Clinic: Quick Fix offers low-cost spay/neuter services for all residents. There is no proof of residency or income required.

Operation SNIP: Space is limited. Operation SNIP offers spaying/neutering of pets at our Veterinary Medical Centers in St. Louis City and Westport Area Center in Maryland Heights. It is available to Missouri pet owners regardless of income. The program, which charges only $19.95 per surgery, is designed to help curb pet overpopulation and keep pets healthy.

Operation SPOT: OpSPOT facilitates affordable spaying and neutering by area veterinarians.

Pound Pals Nooterville: Nooterville is a service that allows you to spay or neuter your dog or cat for a low cost or free!

St. Louis Pet Clinic: Both early and low-cost spay/neuter. 2245 S. Grand, St. Louis, MO 63104. (314) 773-6400.

Low-Cost Spay/Neuter Options in Illinois

Partners for Pets Humane Society: Clinic: (618) 540 -7387, Spay/Neuter Info

Metro East Humane SocietyClinic: (618) 656-4405 x475

State of Illinois Spay/Neuter Program$15 if on food stamps or social security disability, For application: (217) 782-3984

For more options call:

  • (800) 248-SPAY
  • (800) 321-PETS

Myths & Facts About Fixing Your Dog

Myth: Pets will get fat and lazy if they are spayed/neutered.
Fact: The only reason animals become fat and lazy is if they are overfed and under-exercised, or are diagnosed with thyroid problems.

Myth: A dog will be less protective (not as good of a guard dog) if it undergoes spaying or neutering.
Fact: A dog’s sex hormones aren’t what make it protect your family, it is their natural instinct and genetics.

Myth: My dog/cat is strictly kept indoors, on a leash, or in a fenced in area and does not have access to other unaltered animals. There is no need to spay or neuter him/her.
Fact: There is no guarantee that your pet will never have the opportunity to escape. It just takes one time. The only 100% accurate method to eliminate the over-population of unwanted animals is by having your pet spayed (female) or neutered (male). Spaying/neutering prevents unwanted offspring and eliminates many of the behavioral problems associated with the mating instinct, and can also greatly reduce or eliminate the possibility of certain diseases such as cancer. Animals that don’t fight don’t get injured – they also don’t get fatal diseases such as FIV (Feline Immunodeficiency Virus – Feline AIDS) which is spread by bites.

Myth: It’s healthier for my female dog to have one litter of puppies before I spay her.
Fact: Medical evidence has shown that a dog who is spayed before her first heat cycle is typically healthier than dogs spayed after the first heat cycle or after having a litter of puppies. Spaying a female before the first heat greatly reduces the risk of mammary cancer, which is usually fatal.

Myth: I don’t want to neuter my male dog because I don’t want him to feel like less of a male.
Fact: Dogs have no concept of sexual identity or ego the way humans do and neutering does not change a dog’s basic personality. He doesn’t suffer in any way when neutered.

Myth: Spaying and neutering is too expensive.
Fact: The cost of spaying or neutering is based on the age, size, and sex of the dog, your veterinarian’s fees, and other variables. However, spay or neuter surgery is a one-time cost, and if you factor in the many benefits, such as improved health throughout your dog’s lifetime, it is a relatively small charge. It’s a bargain compared to the costs associated with raising a litter of puppies, such as exams for the mother, puppy checks and vaccinations, the extra food you need, etc. There are many low-cost spay/neuter options available in St. Louis for residents to take advantage of.

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