Us in a nutshell!

giving tuesdayWe hope you think of us this #givingtuesday.

What is #givingtuesday?  It is a global day of giving fueled by the power of social media and collaboration. Celebrated on the Tuesday following Thanksgiving (in the U.S.) and the widely recognized shopping events Black Friday and Cyber Monday, #GivingTuesday kicks off the charitable season, when many focus on their holiday and end-of-year giving.

We here at Stafford Animal Shelter thought it was a good day to highlight our mission and recap our services that make us most proud to be the only nonprofit animal care facility in Park County!

  • We are an “open door” shelter and accept every pet in need: abandoned, lost or homeless. We do not turn down animals based on history, health, disability, breed or age including abandoned newborn litters.
  • Once an animal is up for adoption, we have no restriction on their length of stay with us and we will keep them as long as it takes to find a them a home regardless of space.
  • We are the only Shelter in the area that accepts all domesticated pets; not just dogs and cats and we have a “zoo” where we adopt out all of our pocket pets and exotic critters like rabbits, guinea pigs, snakes, ferrets, hamsters, rats, fish, turtles, sugar gliders, finches, parrots, hedgehogs, iguanas and more.
  • We work with local law enforcement and animal control to assist on cases and care for those confiscated for abuse, cruelty or running at large.
  • Provide safe harbor for pets of domestic violence victims, those suffering from unforeseen emergencies, natural disasters or evacuations.
  • We assist senior citizens and those experiencing financial hardships, through special earmarked funds, with veterinary care costs and pet supplies to avoid surrendering their beloved pets.
  • We serve the people and pets of greater Southwestern Montana, not just Park County. Many adopters, surrenders and strays come from Gallatin, Sweet Grass, Meagher, Stillwater & Yellowstone Counties and we work with Great Falls and Butte to take in domesticated rabbits.
  • We have partnerships with three Montana Indian Reservations and one in North Dakota and their local rescues to help take in dogs through our “Pure Bred Rez Dog Program” while they work to humanely decrease their overpopulation.
  • Through our Animal Care Enrichment Program “Project Happiness” we continually strive to enhance the experience for our pets here with volunteer socialization, group play, outside yards and catios.
  • We offer the public adoption counseling prior to choosing a pet, continuing behavior advice for adopters and the community as well as public dog obedience classes with our on-staff Canine Behaviorist.
  • We house nearly a thousand animals each year with approximately half being reclaimed and half adopted.
  • Every adoptable cat & dog is spayed or neutered, vaccinated, dewormed and microchipped prior to adoption.
  • We receive no federal, state government or national organization support, we are almost completely funded on small donations from businesses and people just like you!

Our shelter is a reflection of our community, we hope you are as passionate about our mission as we are.  Fundraising is a crucial part of what we do in order to keep our doors open & continue providing for the animals that we all love.

Please donate what you can with the link below, no amount is too small. #givingtuesday #staffordanimalshelter #thatsusinanutshell

giving tuesday

Obedience Classes Offered!

Tony ClassStafford Animal Shelter in Livingston Montana is now offering basic dog obedience class instructed by Tony Marcuzzo, our staff Canine Behavior Consultant and Evaluator. Most of you who have adopted a dog from the shelter have probably had the pleasure of meeting Tony or have seen him at outreach events or at “Downtown Dogs” with adoptable pets. He conducts behavior assessments on all of our dogs to determine their level of safety before adopting them into the community. He also offers continued post adoption behavior support for all of our alumni. He comes to the shelter with 7 years experience training and handling animals in kennel and shelter environment as the behavior assistant for 5 years at Heart of the Valley Animal Shelter in Bozeman, MT where he honed his training and evaluating skills. He also has guided sled dog rides for two winters where he was responsible for up to 18 dogs and 5 guests at a time in remote locations.  Not only is Tony experienced with canines,  he is the resident volunteer caretaker of horses and goats at M.A.E.R.A. Ranch (Montana Awareness, Education and Equine Rehabilitation Association) in Paradise Valley.   Tony is an excellent resource for the shelter & the community and we’re happy to have him teach the course!

To enroll,  please download the registration form here, complete and email back to, fax to (406) 222-8752 or drop off at the shelter during business hours.Enrollment for our classes are open to the public. Class size is limited in order to give individualized attention to you and your dog.

Each course is 4 weeks long, 1 hour each. Cost for the entire course is $40 for Stafford alumni, $60 for altered dogs and $80 for unaltered dogs. Proof of vaccinations is required (rabies, kennel cough, and parvo/distemper vaccinations) and (human) participants must be at least 18 years of age.

Tony will contact you to approved your dog and schedule the next open training course that fits your schedule.  Once approved,  you can pay in person at the shelter,  via credit card over the phone or online by clicking “donate” button here.  You do not need to have a PayPal account to pay online,  click the “donate” button and be sure to leave a note at check out that you’re paying for classes.  $40 for alumni, $60 for altered dogs, $80 for unaltered.  Please wait to be approved to pay for your spot in dog training class.  All classes must be paid for before the night of class.

Feel free to email Tony at, (406) 222-4938 or (406) 222-2111 with any questions.  All proceeds from classes benefit the shelter, thank you for your support!