In the list below, you’ll find a selection of the best dog rescues in Iowa. We’ve featured 10 across the state in total.
1. Furry Friends Refuge (Des Moines)
Furry Friends Refuge is a nonprofit organization based in Des Moines, Iowa. Their team of dedicated volunteers runs a strictly no-kill shelter, and in 2017 they successfully rescued over 400 dogs. These animals were nursed back to health and adopted into loving, permanent homes. Many dogs are placed in loving foster homes prior to adoption.
Furry Friends Refuge operates throughout West Des Moines, Windsor Heights, Urbandale, and Clive. As well as rescue and adoption services, they also provide spay/neuter programs and community education. If you’re interested in adopting, view available dogs here. To donate to Furry Friends Refuge, visit this page.
2. Last Hope Animal Rescue (Cedar Rapids)
Last Hope Animal Rescue is a nonprofit organization based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. The organization was founded in 2004 and is entirely run by volunteers. Most animals are rescued from local, high-kill, overcrowded shelters, then placed in foster care until they can be adopted into permanent homes.
Once animals are rescued, they undergo a veterinary health checkup and also have their temperament evaluated, allowing the team to determine the type of home best suited to each individual dog. If you’re interested in adopting from Last Hope Animal Rescue, view the available dogs here. Or, visit this page to donate to the organization.
3. King’s Harvest Pet Rescue (Davenport)
King’s Harvest Pet Rescue is a nonprofit animal rescue organization that operates throughout the Quad Cities and surrounding communities. Based in Davenport, Iowa, King’s Harvest Pet Rescue takes abandoned, surrendered, and homeless pets and places them with loving adopters. They also offer affordable spay/neuter services to help reduce pet overpopulation.
King’s Harvest Pet Rescue offers a number of services to low-income pet owners to help keep pets in their homes. They provide affordable veterinary care, free pet food, and temporary re-homing of pets if necessary. View adoptable dogs here, or donate to King’s Harvest Pet Rescue here.
4. Noah’s Hope Animal Rescue (Sioux City)
The team at Noah’s Hope Animal Rescue first started saving animals in 2007. Based in Sioux City, this nonprofit organization was fully registered in 2010 and later opened a thrift store to help raise much-needed funds for rescued pets. The organization is run entirely by volunteers who primarily rescue disadvantaged dogs (such as the sick, injured, or elderly).
Since opening their doors, Noah’s Hope Animal Rescue has saved thousands of pets in need. If you’re interested in adopting, you can view their available dogs here. If you would like to donate to the organization, you can do so here.
5. Fur Fun Rescue (Iowa City)
Fur Fun Rescue is an animal rescue located in the Iowa City/Cedar Rapids area. This nonprofit organization rescues dogs across Eastern Iowa and finds loving homes for them. To date, they are responsible for the successful re-homing of almost 1,500 rescue dogs.
Founded in 2014, this organization places rescued dogs in foster care until they can be adopted. At any time, they typically have 40 to 60 dogs in their care – you can view their adoptable dogs here. Most come from overcrowded shelters where they are at risk of being euthanized, while some also come from owners who can no longer care for them. Donate to Fur Fun Rescue at the bottom of this page.
6. Animal Lifeline of Iowa (Des Moines)
Animal Lifeline of Iowa is a nonprofit rescue based in Des Moines, Iowa. They offer a shelter for dogs with special needs and have been operating throughout Des Moines for almost 35 years. This no-kill rescue brings in injured or handicapped dogs and cats, as well as those with serious medical conditions.
These animals are rehabilitated and given temporary shelter before they can be adopted into their forever homes. All rescued animals include veterinary care, including vaccinations, health assessments, heartworm checks, flea/tick prevention, de-worming, microchipping, and spay/neuter surgeries. View adoptable dogs here, or donate to Animal Lifeline of Iowa here.
7. Dogs Forever (Cedar Rapids)
Dogs Forever is a volunteer-run rescue organization based in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Dogs Forever is committed to rescuing abused, neglected, or homeless dogs and don’t discriminate based on breed, age, or size. All dogs are cared for at the shelter until they can be adopted into loving forever homes.
Prior to adoption, all dogs are spayed/neutered, tested for Lyme disease and heartworm, have rabies and distemper/parvo vaccines, and are microchipped. If you are interested in adopting from Dogs Forever, you can view their available dogs here. Visit this page to make a donation to the organization.
8. Quad Cities Greyhound Adoption (Davenport)
Quad Cities Greyhound Adoption is a nonprofit organization based in Davenport, Iowa. Their team of dedicated volunteers care for retired greyhounds previously used for racing and do their best to find loving homes for them. The dogs are brought to the kennel, vetted, and cared for until they can be adopted.
Greyhounds have a lot of energy and can display puppy behavior even until they are three years old. If you’re interested in adopting one, you’ll need to be prepared to put in some effort with training and make sure you have enough space for the dog to run around and exercise. View adoptable dogs here, or donate to the organization by clicking on the button on the right of this page.
9. Sioux City Animal Adoption & Rescue Center (Sioux City)
The Sioux City Animal Adoption & Rescue Center is a no-kill animal rescue organization that works in collaboration with the City of Sioux City, Iowa. The organization was established in 2006 and focuses on both reuniting lost pets with their owners and re-homing abandoned or surrendered animals with loving adopters.
Animals brought in as strays are initially held for seven days in case an owner wishes to claim them. If not, pets enter the pet adoption program until a permanent home can be found. Visit this page to view adoptable dogs, or donate to Sioux City Animal Adoption & Rescue Center here.
10. Friends of the Animals (Iowa City)
Friends of the Animals is a registered nonprofit organization that was established in 2002. They are the only animal shelter based in Cedar County, Iowa, and are responsible for rescuing homeless cats and dogs and caring for them. Rescued animals are looked after until a carefully selected adopter can be found.
Based in Iowa City, Friends of the Animals relies on volunteers and foster carers to look after dogs and cats until they can be adopted. Adoptable dogs can be viewed here, or you can donate to Friends of the Animals by clicking the button at the top of this page.
“Emily is an avid writer and dog lover who usually prefers the company of pets over people. Based in Los Angeles, when not stuck in traffic she spends her days reading in the sunshine, relaxing at the beach, or planning her next adventure.”