Our Story

History of Dirk’s Fund

Our story begins in the 1980s, when the founder and his wife started rescuing dogs.  Through the popularity of their own Golden Retrievers, Sadie and Hannah, they were contacted by animal control regarding a Golden Retriever that was going to be euthanized. Her name was Jenny. They were able to find her a home and then replaced her with another homeless dog.  This is the cycle that started Dirk’s Fund.   They rescued rehabilitated and found loving homes for eleven dogs in the first year.  The director and his wife used their own home, resources and personal time to make sure each and every dog’s life had a happy ending.

The Name Dirk

The name Dirk comes from a Great Pyrenees who could not use his back legs and desperately needed surgery. The surgery was more than the directors could afford, so they began asking for donations for “Dirk’s Fund.” Dirk was a wonderful dog and they were able to raise enough money to pay for his surgery. After that, the name just stuck.

Dirk’s Fund Today

In 1999, Dirk’s Fund became an official nonprofit rescue with 501c3 status. At that time we started seeing a dramatic increase in the volume of dogs. In 2008, we were lucky enough to move into our shelter in Pacific, Missouri. We now rescue dogs from around the mid-west region using a network of volunteers and supportive veterinarians. Our amazing network of volunteers has allowed us to remain an all volunteer organization with no payroll for over thirty years.

Board of Directors

Our Board of Directors has a diverse knowledge base from accounting and finance to marketing and legal. The board typically meets on a quarterly basis, but will convene on an as needed basis when necessary. The guidance from our board ensures longevity and financial stability.

Goals & Philosophy

Our goals are to assist in ending animal suffering and to reduce the homeless dog population in our region. It is imperative to end the cycle of animal cruelty. We believe it is important to reach out to the community to educate children and adults to stop this cycle of animal suffering. When dogs are taken into Dirk’s Fund they are treated as our own and provided the care and compassion they deserve.

Our Fight

Dogs are at the highest risk for all types of animal cruelty. Neglect and abandonment are the most common forms of companion animal abuse in the United States. However, there are many documented cases every year of beatings, shootings, stabbings and torture. Missouri is known for its large number of puppymills. These puppymills simultaneously abuse and neglect the dogs in their care. Homeless dogs are “easy targets” for predators. If these animals survive the abuse they have no home to go to, no one to care for their wounds or help rehabilitate them.

For many factors, large dogs are more commonly abused than small dogs. Large dogs are harder to adopt and therefore are known for their extended stays at animal rescues. Often dogs that have been abused or neglected are quickly euthanized, because of the increase cost and care for rehabilitating them. It is heartbreaking that after horrific abuse and neglect all society can offer these dogs is euthanasia. Dirk’s Fund intakes many animals a year with histories of abuse or neglect.

The community needs to come together to put an end to animal cruelty. Better documentation of abuse and neglect will help create greater awareness and by empowering the community we should be able to help fend off future cases. We need to be able to care for more of these special cases. Limitations because of extensive care or financial obligations cannot stop us from saving these animals.

Shelter Animals Count Data

Adoption Donations

The adoption donations are not decided on based on the expense of the particular dog. A dog with no medical issues will cost the rescue approximately $507. This does not account for the dogs in our care who need heartworm treatment, surgeries, medicine or puppies who stay in the shelter for longer than our average of 21 days.


Exam & Fecal Collection


Neuter/Spay & Blood Panel




Heartworm Test




Heartworm Preventative


Flea & Tick Preventative


Daily Cost (Food, Supplies, etc) $6/day


Our medical costs are generously subsidized by our supporters Affton Veterinary Clinic and Pacific Animal Hospital. We not only appreciate their financial support, but also the ongoing love and care they provide for our critters.

Dirks Fund