When Angus came to Palmetto Animal League at just 6 weeks old, it was painfully apparent that life on the streets had not been easy for him. Here was this tiny kitten, sweet as can be, with the side of his face all but crushed and one eye hanging by a thread.

PAL veterinarian Dr. Levin performed emergency surgery to remove his eye and save his life, but that wasn’t our only hurdle.

Along with his physical injuries, Angus had life-threatening internal ailments, the result of being born homeless. A blood-borne disease nearly took his life twice, but even with his suppressed immune system, Angus kept fighting back.

PAL used every tool in our shelter medicine toolbox and now Angus is a healthy, thriving cat. The only evidence of his ordeal is his sweet, funny, slightly disfigured little face.

As PAL’s president, I have to try hard not to take all our rescues home with me, but this time I did. Angus is mine – and I tell him every day how handsome he is.

I decided to share this story about Angus because, as I look back on how PAL has grown since we first opened, I’m reminded that our organization is not the brick and mortar that make up our No Kill Adoption Center, but rather the body and soul of every innocent animal who lived because they were lucky enough to walk, or be carried, through our doors.

This month PAL celebrates 10 years of saving lives. That means more than 7,500 cats and dogs rescued.

You, as a supporting member of our Lowcountry community, have played a role in touching every one of these precious lives. Your support makes rescue a reality.

For the nameless kittens born into homelessness, we can answer on your behalf, “Come in. You are safe here.” For the dogs who suffer unimaginable abuse, we can quickly turn your compassion into action and whisper softly, “No one will ever hurt you again.”

As we enter this next chapter, PAL is going to fight even harder to give homeless animals a voice and a second chance at life because, at the heart of everything we do, there is this one elemental truth: These are lives worth saving.

Help us celebrate our 10th anniversary by attending our Holiday Open House drop-in between 1 and 5 p.m. Nov. 30 at the PAL Adoption Center, 56 Riverwalk Blvd. in Okatie. Enjoy cookies and cider as you tour our newly updated cat rooms, pick up your PAL 10th anniversary ornament and take joy in $10 adoptions all day!

Amy Campanini is president of Palmetto Animal League.