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On Sunday morning, I was put in contact with Debbie Darino of The Ponce Animal Foundation for help with my dog Chloe. She took the time to reach out immediately as soon as she heard that Chloe needed assistance. Chloe has been part of our for 6 years. The day before, she started vomiting and passing blood only in her stool. She became super sick in less than 24 hours. We were so worried about how we were going to get her the help she needed with no savings for that. That’s when The Ponce Animal Foundation came through. I appreciate so much the help provided to us from these funds Chloe was able to be seen and get stabilized and feel better. She had to be hospitalized for treatment. It’s been 3 days now since she was treated by the veterinarian, and she is wagging her tail, eating, drinking a lot of water, playing with her sister, and still taking antibiotics. She is herself again!! We are so grateful to Debbie Darino and The Ponce Animal Foundation and will never forget this blessing. Thank you all!!
– Sharimar H.


We cannot even begin to put into words how amazing and thankful we are for The Ponce Animal Foundation for helping us with Jade! In the beginning of March we got blessed with an amazing little girl and only 3 days after having her she managed to play a little too hard and when running into her crate her back leg got stuck and broke. Unable to find any vet that would work with us financially to afford to get Jade the care that she needed, we were put in contact with Debbie Darino of The Ponce Animal Foundation. Within 1 hour of just speaking on the phone with her, Jade was seen by the vet and immediately cared for with X-rays, pain medication and a plan on how to move forward with her care. Fast forward to now, Jade is cast-free, doing amazing and running around like nothing ever happened! Though she does need some work to rebuild the muscle in her leg, she is the happiest furbaby we could have asked for. Thank you again to the amazing work of The Ponce Animal Foundation and the amazing donors that helped our furbaby!
– Ashley D.


We would like to pass a warm, heartfelt, thank you to Debbie Darino and The Ponce Animal Foundation for their generous efforts of providing help for an ACL/CCL surgery for our rescued dog Rip. Without their help, Rip would still be in pain due to the expense of his surgery that we just could not afford. Rip is a greyhound/pit mix that we rescued from the Flagler Humane Society in 2020. He is a great addition to the family with his exciting personality and protective demeanor. He unfortunately lost use of his left rear leg while running in the backyard chasing anything that likes to run from him. After x-rays and a complete evaluation by an orthopedic doctor, Rip was diagnosed with a torn CCL, better known as the cranial cruciate ligament. Without surgery, his quality of life would have changed drastically. The original estimated surgery cost was $4,800 through our family Vet in Palm Coast. A cost, unfortunately, we could not afford at the time with all of life’s curveballs. We researched other alternatives; however, all had the same result of Rip not having full function in that leg and other risks. We then heard of The Ponce Animal Foundation who help people in need of services for their pets, strays, abused and rescued animals or lack the funds to provide care to them. After reaching out via email, Debbie responded back quickly and was happy to help after hearing Rip’s story.

The Ponce Animal Foundation coordinated surgery with Dr. Erne at VOMC of St. Augustine, which was performed on March 22, 2024, by him and his wonderful team with great success. Rip is healing great and seems to be in minimal pain if any and is already starting to walk on his leg again. It’s only been 11 days since surgery and Rip’s happiness is back! We are truly blessed and very thankful for Debbie and The Ponce Animal Foundation for their efforts and only hope that we can help and support them in the future. Thank you!

The Vitkauskas Family


A week ago any pet owner’s worst nightmare came to life. My boy Riot was viciously attacked by another dog and succumbed to some serious injuries. Nothing prepares you for something like this and you would never expect it to happen… until it does. I was in a place where my family was hurt and I couldn’t help him in the financial aspect of it all. The vets did what they could within the amount of money I had, which was nowhere near enough to get him fully stitched up and get him the meds and aftercare he would need. I applied for help through this website my mom sent me, not knowing what I was applying for, I didn’t expect too much. Not even 5 mins after applying I get a call, a call that truly has changed the way I look at the world. I’m sure for both Riot and I. Debbie Darino, with The Ponce Animal Foundation, the sweetest person ever, asked about what happened and what I needed, and without too much detail she already was willing to help. A stranger who had no idea was willing to help me and my boy… I couldn’t even believe it. Truly, felt too good to be true… but it was. Deb within a couple of hours got the funds to help me out and told me to go back to the ER vet immediately and to get everything he needed and to know it’ll be handled. I couldn’t be more thankful and no words in the world could express the admiration, inspiration and overall love that I feel towards this organization. They were a bright light in the dark that we needed. We are on the road to recovery and again couldn’t be more grateful.

Manuel R.


Back in June a few months after my husband and I had found out we were expecting our first child! Our little Milo was starting to have some accidents around the house which is very unlike him and we noticed some spots of blood in his urine, so we immediately went to the vet. He ended up having huge bladder stones that needed to be surgically removed costing around $2000. We of course went through with the surgery to remove the stones to make sure he would be back to normal and pain-free. Milo is now on a prescription dog food to prevent the stones from coming back. However, in the last weeks of December Milo started having issues with his bladder again having accidents around the house and again having blood in his urine. So again we take him back to the vet for an Exam and they show in the X-ray that there is now an extremely large bladder stone that not only has formed but is blocking his urethra and that it’s a major risk because the blockage can cause his bladder to burst and can be fatal. So Milo now needs another emergency surgery that will cost another $2000. Stressed out with the fact that we just had our son a week before thanksgiving who had to be delivered via emergency c section and that we were still paying off Milos last bill from the first surgery, we told them there was no way we could afford the surgery and asked for any other options. To our disbelief the other option that was suggested was being euthaunized. By the grace of God we were put in contact with Debbie Darino who heard Milo’s story and said there was no way she was going to let Milo suffer that fate! She called around to vet offices and within hours of our initial conversation had found a vet able to take Milo in for the emergency surgery to remove the stones and even assisted us with the bill! We don’t know how to thank Debbie enough for all the help she has done for us! She cares so much for the animals and was even driving to the vets personally to check in on Milo during his recovery as well. We will never stop sharing our story and how Debbie and the Ponce Animal Foundation has changed our lives.


Hi, my name is Cash, but mom calls me Cashew. Boy, oh boy, do I love me some toys, and more important- chewing toys. One morning, Tuesday morning to be exact, mom was on her way to make us more money for food and treats. While she was working, I got bored and decided her sleeping pillow would be a good toy. When mom got home she found what I had done. I was fine until I went to bed. But then in the middle of the night while everyone was sleeping , my tummy decided to remind me of the fun I had earlier, fluff everywhere! It is now Wednesday and mom came home from work again and fed me and my sister Vause dinner. I instantly puked it up with some more fluff. Mom took me to the Emergency Vet immediately that morning. My x-rays showed a bowel obstruction. My mom had an anxiety attack when she found out the bills were going to be $4,893.00 for my emergency surgery. My mom’s friend got word of a lady named Debbie Darino. She was so fast to respond to my mom’s call and wanted to know all about me and my situation. My mom called around to a lot of places and found a vet in Orlando who would do the surgery. Not only did Debbie find a vet 10 mins from my house , but also offered her services through The Ponce Animal Foundation due to my mom needing help with my expenses. My mom loaded me up, and Volusia Woods Animal Clinic took me in and saved my life. I am home now , and I’m recovering beautifully. My mom keeps saying Debbie is a godsend and I agree! Debbie has kept in contact,and my mom appreciates her foundation immensely for keeping her sweet boy around.

Jenna H.


I don’t know how to put this other than Marley is our entire world. Marley came into our life as a puppy in March of 2021. She will be 2 on NYE this year. When we brought Marley home we had no idea this poor 7 week old puppy was already exposed to Parvo and would be very very ill in just a few days. 7 days at the emergency vet, $6998 in vet bills and more tears than we can count. She was still with us! She beat parvo and has been the happiest girl and the best family dog we could ever ask for. Fast forward to just a short few weeks ago…Marley ingested a bouncy ball and it was blocking her intestines. My stomach sank when I saw the x-rays and I was heartbroken. I knew how serious this was and I also knew I was tapped out from moving and car expenses. How was I going to save my girl? As a single mother to 4 children it was out of my reach. I exhausted all options. Debbie Darino of The Ponce Animal Foundation came into the picture and had Marley into surgery that day, just hours later. She gave us hope and life. Literally helping save Marley’s life. I can’t begin to express my gratitude for this woman and everything she does. It takes someone with a huge heart to put themselves out there the way she has and fight for these babies and their families. Debbie and her followers are the reason why Marley is here today. The reason why my children still get to run and play fetch with their best friend. Our family’s protector gets to continue and see brighter days. Marley is over a week post op and is a brand new pup. The love she has for life and her babies is everything.

Without Debbie and The Ponce Animal Foundation, Marley most likely would not be here. Thankfully, we don’t have to worry about that now. They are life changers ❤️

Kayla C.

I have many rescue animals that have been part of my family for over 15 years. Grew up with my 4 kids who are 16-20 now. We moved here over a year ago and things have been really rough financially. Being in rescue, finding my babies another home isn’t an option for us. They are with us for the rest of their lives. It gets expensive and at times we all struggle. Debbie Darino and The Ponce Animal Foundation helped us by getting all of our animals food! She will never let any animal go hungry! She’s an amazing woman! We will forever be grateful to her! She does this all on her own and depends solely on donations. When on our feet I will be donating back. Below are some of my babies! Thank you, Debbie and The Ponce Animal Foundation! You are a true blessing!

Tara W.


Ally is my sweet 4 year old Border Collie mix. We noticed she was having problems urinating,  so we took her to our vet immediately.  He took x-rays, which showed that her bladder was full of stones. No one has ever seen so many. The estimated surgery for bladder stone removal was $1500. I had no way to pay for it , especially after still paying and maxing out my credit cards for 3 surgeries, I had myself this year..

I started a Go Fund me, but donations weren’t nearly enough.

Then someone suggested I contact The Ponce Animal Foundation. I contacted Deb Darino the founder and she agreed to help me. Because of her caring heart for animals, she was just the blessing Ally & I needed. 

I can never thank The Ponce Animal Foundation enough,  With her help, and others with  donations,  made it possible for Ally to receive the surgery she so desperately needed.  I would have been heartbroken to lose her.

I also want to thank Dr Armstrong and the staff at Pet Street Veterinary Care Center for taking such good care of Ally during the surgery. 

Susan C.


This is our little girl Charlotte. On Thursday Sept. 21 we were told that she had pyometra, which is a life threatening condition. It is an infection in the uterus caused by not having her fixed. The vet told us that we could try antibiotic’s and they would work or they wouldn’t and she would die in a couple of days. Charlotte has been with us since birth. We also have her mother. Hearing this news was devastating.. We were told we would have to take her to a ER Vet and it would cost anywhere from a $1,000 to $6,000 for her surgery. I was a wreck and so was the rest of our family. The next day I got on one of my Facebook sites and asked for help. One of the ladies in my group suggested I try The Ponce Animal Foundation. So I immediately wrote them an email asking if they could help. I also called around to all the ERs and found out that the surgery would most likely cost $4,000 and no one could get her in til monday… My family did not have that kind of money. At around 12:30 pm I received a call from a woman named Debbie Darino. She told me she was the owner of The Ponce Animal Foundation and wanted to know about my baby.. I explained what was going on and she jumped in to action. She asked if she could call me right back and if I could get my dogs blood work. After a couple minutes this amazing woman called me right back letting me know she could help and was sending me to a Vet in Ormond Beach!! I have never jumped so fast to get in my car.. I drove the hour to where her and the amazing Dr. Vandiecjk at Petstreet Veterinary clinic was waiting for my baby. Everyone jumped in to action getting her ready for her surgery.. It is now one day later and my dog is doing amazing. Before the surgery she wouldn’t move, eat, drink or do anything, but lay. Now she is moving on her own, drinking from her bowl and just back to somewhat normal. I can not thank The Ponce Animal Foundation and Debbie enough!!!! Thank you, for saving Charlotte!!! Thank you for being a light in so many peoples dark tunnel!!!!

Crystal D.


When Kitty was acting strange, meowing differently than normal, and going to his litter box more and staying in it longer, we decided to take him to the Animal ER. The cost was $60 to be seen. After examining him, it turned out he had a blocked urethra. The cost for surgery was $2500.We were unable to pay that amount so the vet said they could do a “quick fix” for $250. So that’s what we did. Two days later, we went to the Beville Animal Hospital where he was seen and determined that he had a blocked urethra again and our only options were to do the $2500 surgery or put him down. They gave us the name of an organization that helps people and their pets with funding named The Ponce Animal Foundation Inc and that they could help us save Kitty. We called Debbie Darino at the foundation and within minutes, she got the ball rolling. He was transferred to the ER vet at VECEV where he received immediate treatment that saved Kitty’s life. We are so grateful to Debbie and the Ponce Animal Foundation and can’t thank her enough!

Mike C.


Debbie Darino and her foundation (The Ponce Animal Foundation Inc) were instrumental in providing the care that our dog Ducky needed after he broke his rear right leg. As always, this emergency came at a stressful time for my family when there was multiple other things going on which led us to come up short moneywise for the surgery. We were moving and it was our last trip so we had our dogs with us. Things shifted in the back of the suburban and scared Ducky so he felt he had to jump out of the window. In three years he has never attempted to even go anywhere near the windows. Debbie come in and not only filled in the gap moneywise, but also led us to an awesome surgeon who took care of our Ducky very well. We greatly appreciate all the help Miss Debbie has given us. The Ponce Animal Foundation is a wonderful 501c3 non-profit organization. Thank you so much.
Ducky and family

Bobbi B.


My Yorkie Chewy was showing signs of a UTI, so I took him to his vet for what I expected to be a round of antibiotics. To my shock, it ended up being 9 bladder stones & surgery was the only option. I lost my husband, who was only 46 to COVID and Chewy was his dog before we married. The thought of losing Chewy too was just too much. I was laid off 6 months ago, so I wasn’t sure how I was going to pay for the surgery. Friends & family helped as much as they could & then a friend from my Bible study group sent me info on The Ponce Animal Foundation. Debbie was truly a godsend! She contacted me super quick, calmed me down, worked with my Vet & checked on us both through the whole ordeal. The assistance we received means more than I could possibly express. Chewy came through surgery well & is healing. I’m sending the biggest thank you’s possible to every individual, business & supporter of The Ponce Animal Foundation. I look forward to being a donor in the future when my situation improves for sure! I’m so grateful my sweet boy is still here to keep me company!
~Sheila B.


This is Caesar, my ten year old Pomeranian. He woke up one morning and he had swelling in his neck and face. I’m a disabled senior and I did not know what to do. A friend told me about The Ponce Animal Foundation. It was evening, but I left a message. A short time later, I received a phone call from Debbie Darino. She was very nice and explained to me who and what the foundation does. She got Caesar into a veterinarian the very same day. He was treated and was given medicine and it was all paid for by the foundation. I thank you so much!
-Tammy M.


Several days after my Great Dane Merlin was bit by a Water moccasin I received a call from Debbie Darino from The Ponce Animal Foundation. Merlin at the time was in ICU at University of Florida Veterinary Hospital. Debbie was so supportive and encouraging as Merlin was touch and go for several days. He finally pulled through after 7 days in the ER and was able to come home with me. Debbie and her foundation The Ponce Animal Foundation donated a generous amount towards the $10k bill. I am so grateful for the support as it is still a long road to recover both physically for Merlin and financially for me. She is truly a blessing and passionate about her foundation.
-Louise F.


A couple of days ago I shared a gofundme to raise money (that didn’t work) due to Luna’s medical condition because she needed a really expensive surgery. Thanks to God first for putting this awesome lady, our hero, Debbie, into our lives right before we had already signed euthanasia papers to put Luna down. She came in as a ray of hope and blessing in our lives. She helped us get Luna’s surgery done with the best veterinarian that we ever met, Dr. Vandeijk at Pet Street Vet Clinic. I can’t thank her enough for this huge blessing by covering all expenses for Luna’s surgery and treatment. Please donate and share her website. The Ponce Animal Foundation, because maybe there is someone or a pet out there that might need her right now too.
-Carlos R


I reached out to The Ponce Animal Foundation for assistance with a vet bill after learning that our furbaby Cassanova (Cass) needed several teeth extracted. He had not been eating much, drinking lots of water, and quickly losing weight, so I took him to the vet. They immediately started him on pain meds and antibiotics, and thankfully he started feeling well enough to eat again.

The vet gave me an estimate of between $900 to $1,200 for the much needed dental procedures. I was shocked and worried because I couldn’t afford the surgery on my own. I submitted The Ponce Animal Foundation application online and to my surprise Debbie Darino called me the very next morning ❣️ She immediately started guiding me and assured me that she would help me with funding for Casanova’s extractions. She spoke with our vet’s office that same day! I can’t believe how quickly Debbie acted to help us. We are so very thankful for Debbie and The Ponce Animal Foundation for helping our family’s fur baby receive the care he needs. Debbie Darino is truly an angel!!! Thank you so much for your help 🥰😻 and your dedication to animal advocacy. The world is a better place because of you!! Thank you to all the incredible donors that make her efforts possible. We feel truly blessed for the assistance.
-Kelly B.


Sammy roamed the streets of North Texas for many years. Neighbors would return him each time he was found, but then one day he was critically injured and they said to keep him or they were going to euthanize him. We found out Sammy needed FHO surgery but we didn’t have $3,000, so we asked Debbie Darino of The Ponce Animal Foundation, for help. She immediately sprang into action to get Sammy the emergency surgery he needed. We’re so grateful Sammy will be able to live the rest of his days in a good loving home, thanks to good people with good hearts!! Thank you for saving Sammy’s life with us!!
~Jenni V


Debbie Darino helped get treatment for our female Rottie, Mocha, who tore both of her cruciate tendons. Without Debbie’s guidance and support we would have had to put Mocha to sleep. Being a Veteran, Mocha is my PTSD dog. Debbie is a Godsend, and she works tirelessly to help every animal she can. I can count on one hand the number of people I have met in over 50 years who exemplify honor, character, passion, and integrity. Debbie is #1, and she always will be. We love you, Debbie! ~ Anthony, Sarah, and Mocha Jordan.


BELLE is a 10 ½ year old chocolate Labrador Retriever. On August 6th 2021 I received some devastating news that Belle had a torn cruciate ligament and required surgery to repair. The surgery was around $3,000 and it was something that we could simply not afford. Through reading some Facebook posts from others whose dogs had the same surgery, I came across a post thanking Debbie Darino for her assistance in helping with this same surgery. I reached out to Debbie and she responded right away and got right to work to raise the funds that were needed for Belle’s surgery. She was able to obtain generous donations from people I didn’t even know. It was such a blessing to our family and Belle was able to get the surgery that she needed and regain mobility. We will forever be grateful for Debbie and the numerous donors.
– Lucille H.

Lil Bit

Lil Bit was just walking around her home and that’s when her sudden injury of a torn ACL occurred. We reached out to Debbie Darino and she promptly set her up for a trip to the vet’s office where it was determined that surgery was needed to repair the tear. Lil Bit did great! As you can see, she’s a sassy girl sporting a shirt that says “Cuter than you”. Thank you, Debbie and all the donors, for getting us the help we needed for our baby. We are so happy she is back to being herself again!
-Deanette M.


“It is a well-known fact, there is a direct link between animal abuse and domestic violence”.

Unfortunately, Tiny was a victim of abuse along with her owner. As seen in her photo (permission given), a swift kick to the ribs and leg ended up causing injury to her little body. The Domestic Violence shelter quickly reached out to us for help. Tiny was seen the same day by the veterinarian and also sent for an orthopedic consult. She was put on pain meds and anti-inflammatories. Today, Tiny is really a BIG girl and doing well!


Iris was paralyzed from the waist down from an abusive home. She was rescued and adopted by new owners. As a result of the abuse she endured, Iris became paralyzed from the waist down. The owners reached out to us and we set her up with an excellent Rehab Center immediately. She received acupuncture, underwater treadmill therapy, laser treatments and received most of her feeling back. Iris will need help from a set of wheels for the back legs to help with her balance and ongoing treatment. She loves everyone and is doing remarkably well! We also covered the cost of her “wheels” and she’s loving life again!


Tito is my little guy and best friend, who broke his leg after jumping off the porch stairs. I rushed him to the vet only to be told he needed surgery in Jacksonville to save his leg. I didn’t know what to do. I work full time and have 3 kids, but I couldn’t afford to pay for anything like that. They were going to have to amputate it instead as it was the cheaper option. Thankfully, I was introduced to Debbie Darino and her advocacy for animals. She raised enough money for Tito to have his surgery and pins were inserted that saved his limb! And his recovery went super smooth. To this day, he is healthy and running just like it never happened. I am soooo thankful for Debbie and everyone who donated to help Tito!
–Alexis F. and family


DALLAS-It is unknown how Dallas received a broken leg in three parts. It is believed she may have gotten loose and was hit by a passerby. We quickly reached out to Debbie Darino for help because we didn’t have the funds. Dallas was set up for surgery to repair the complex break. She required plates and screws and is fully recovered. Thanks to Debbie Darino, all the costs were covered! She is happy and healthy again! We can’t thank you enough, Debbie, for all the help in getting our baby back to a healthy life.
– Heather A.

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Thousands of animals each day lack the funds required to care for their health and well-being. Through your generous donations, donors help us pay for the immediate medical care and expenses that are needed in order to protect, save, and meet the needs of animals requiring medical treatment. Please consider making your tax-deductible donation today to help us make a difference in the lives of all animals.