Tony LaRussaBetween its founder's successful baseball career, his high-profile lifesaving work and the star-studded benefit galas, Tony La Russa's Animal Rescue Foundation doesn't need much introduction to Bay Area dog folks. But they're doing something especially proactive for the animals this holiday season: helping them stay with their families.

"People in disadvantaged circumstances need the unconditional love of their pets more than ever during this time of year," says ARF Executive Director Elena Bicker. But beloved longtime pets are ending up in shelters because their humans have fallen on tough times and simply can't afford to feed them.

"No one should have to choose between feeding themselves or their beloved pet," says Bicker. Which is why ARF has teamed up with Safeway and the Salvation Army to collect food for the pets of local people in need. The food drive runs through Dec. 30 at participating stories in the Bay Area. A "Stars to the Rescue" gala in Walnut Creek on Jan. 7 is another way to help: it features award-winning trumpeter Chris Botti, Tom Johnston of the Doobie Brothers and Timothy B. Schmit of The Eagles.

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Posted on: February 9, 2011

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