About Us

Our Mission Statement

To save mama dogs and pups, provide care and enrichment, and find loving, forever homes.

ATR specializes in pregnant and nursing dogs and pups who need time and space to grow and become socialized. Our dogs experience a significant amount of socialization through our specialized programs while in our care. Our puppies go through a specially designed curriculum “Puppy Culture” developed by a team of experts including behavioral veterinarians and credentialed trainers. As soon as they are born and until they leave our care, our pups participate in age-appropriate enrichment activities to help with their socialization and overall development into well-adjusted furry family members. Our mama dogs also work with on site behaviorists who develop personalized programs to prepare them for life as your new best friend. All our dogs are exposed to many experiences to set them – and their new families – up for a lifetime of success. ATR is determined to give adopters all the information available about our dogs so we can find the perfect match. All of our dogs are altered, micro-chipped, and up-to-date on vaccines prior to adoption. Adoption fees paid help cover our substantial costs and fund our life-saving work.

ATR is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and receives no tax or government funding. We do not sell, rent, or share our supporter information with any other organizations or third parties.


“My name is Geri Hormel and I am the founder of Almost There Rescue. What do we do at ATR? We save bitches. No, we don’t go around seeking out malicious, unpleasant women and try to convince them to change their ways (although someone should!). We save dogs. Specifically, homeless, pregnant, large-breed dogs. We scoop those gals up from less than ideal situations and give them a place to birth and raise their pups. We work our tails off to give our pups the medical help, enrichment, socialization, and love that they need on their journeys to finding forever homes.”

Geri was always the girl with too many pets to count – dogs, cats, goats, pigs, horses, and donkeys. She joined the animal rescue world at 16 years old, walking the dogs, working in adoptions, and then enrolling in the Emergency Animal Medical Technician program at Arizona Humane Society. This led her to volunteer at Second Chance Hospital, learning the medical side of rescue with hands-on experience. Geri also volunteered and fostered for many other organizations. Realizing that one of the biggest needs in the rescue world was space and care for large breed pregnant dogs, Geri had her first kennel space built in her backyard so that she could start taking these families home. That was the beginning of Almost There Rescue.

HEIDI RICHMOND Executive Director

“Hi, I’m Heidi Richmond and serving as Almost There Rescue’s Executive Director is the honor and privilege of a lifetime! Can I pet your dog?! 🙂 ” 

Heidi spent her first three years at ATR overseeing development and marketing as well as filling in and helping out wherever else has been needed throughout the rescue. She has over ten years of experience in nonprofit leadership and a mini MBA for Nonprofit Organizations. Heidi has been working with dogs for over 15 years and has always had an enormous soft spot for animals. Heidi’s involvement in the rescue world started when she began volunteering in 2006. In 2012, she started fostering and later began specializing in medical foster cases and at-risk animals. She refers to herself as a “crazy rescue person” and couldn’t be happier having rescue as her full-time gig! Heidi says of all the meaningful nonprofit work she has been involved in, ATR is nearest to her heart. Saving lives alongside the most amazing people is her dream come true!

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