HOW COMMUNITY ANIMAL NETWORK STARTED
DiAnna Pfaff-Martin began helping local animals in 1996. She didn’t
wait until she had a seven figure salary, or, to win the lottery.
Her humble beginning was writing for her homeowner’s association
newsletter, “The Community Animal
Just a single page announced coyote sightings, warned pet owners of
predators, and became a great communication tool for lost and found
Soon handling the phone calls became an issue, says, Pfaff-Martin,
when residents began referring her to help them find new homes for
their pets. Pfaff-Martin began calling herself,
“Community Animal Network”.
Pfaff-Martin could see the need and grew the grassroots publication
to include a “Pet Classifieds”, she called
“The Community Animal
became very popular with the locals who received the paper delivered
by her son Tyler and his friends on roller blades to rotating
neighborhoods. Pfaff-Martin was never far away; supervising and
meeting and greeting neighbors and listening carefully for the next
“The Community Animal
grew to a twelve page city-wide publication with a new twist; a
cover story with opinions and facts. Stories with Tabloid Headlines
like, "Attack Cat On Port Bristol Street”, were very popular and
made the owner of the bully cat aware and an apology was made and
the vet bill was paid.
During the 1990’s, Pfaff-Martins’ efforts for local animals was
visible in high traffic business locations like the Newport Beach
Post Office and the city library on Avocado Street.
Each week Pfaff-Martin photographed the Newport Beach shelter
animals and stood with poster boards filled withphotos of local
animals up for adoption.
Pfaff-Martin with her tall model looks got double-takes, said a
local newspaper columnist of the day, as she handed out her paper in
public. Her pet-promotions proved to be a successful adoption
vehicle for the compounded animals.
The Community Animal
helped raise money for needed procedures and surgeries for the
shelter animals. Ms. Pfaff-Martin met withlocal veterinarians and
negotiatedaffordable pricing for the procedures that proved to make
the shelter dogs and cats adoptable.
Pfaff-Martin understood that local people wanted to avoid the
uncertainty of the municipal shelter system for their pets and
“The Community Animal Report” offered an advertising
option to residents.
hospitals, restaurants, beauty supplies, dry cleaners and other
small businesses offered “The Community Animal Report”to
their customers which helped place more and more local animals into
January 2000, an unlikely arrangement between a store selling pets
and a local animal organization began. Dan Di Giacomo of Russo’s Pet
Experience in the Fashion Island Shopping Center gave space to
DiAnna Pfaff-Martin to promote local animals that needed to find new
Almost immediately a puppy thrown from a moving vehicle was called
in and the first rescue puppy was placed for viewing at Russo’s Pet
Experience. The puppy was swiftly adopted by a Newport Coast couple.
Local animals have been shown at Russo’s Pet Experience for more
than a decade; 50-75 animals a month found new homes prior to the
Still today Ms. Pfaff-Martin, the founder of Community Animal
Network is the “go-to person” for local people who need help finding
new homes for their pets.