SPCA Treats Pet Owners to Tricks for Keeping Pets Safe This Halloween

October 18, 2021
By: SPCA Chief Communications Officer Gina Lattuca

WITH A FEW EXTRA PRECAUTIONS, PETS CAN HAVE A HAPPY HALLOWEEN TOO!

Halloween is meant to be fun for children of all ages, but according to the SPCA Serving Erie County, pets often experience the dark side of Halloween fun.  With extra precautions, seasonal problems can often be avoided:

-HUNGRY PETS:  CHOCOLATE CAN BE FATAL TO YOUR PET!  Please share this tip with children, who may be tempted to share their Halloween take with their best four-footed friends! The sweet smell of Halloween chocolate and other candy left by a door pleases pets, as do cookies and cakes served at Halloween parties. Sweets can cause diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal pain or worse.  Purchase Halloween treats made specifically for pets and keep the “people” treats away from where pets can reach them.


-PETS AS VICTIMS:
 
 Halloween is traditionally known for trick-or-treaters…and pranksters.  KEEP ALL PETS INSIDE on Halloween night, and the nights immediately preceding and following October 31.  This will prevent them from being stolen, teased, kicked, blinded by flashlights or abused in other ways.

-NERVOUS/TERRITORIAL PETS:  Constant door-knocking or doorbell-ringing may cause an extremely nervous pet to shake or tremble uncontrollably, or have an “accident” in the house.  Territorial pets may become aggressive at the sound of unfamiliar visitors.  Keep nervous or territorial pets distracted in another room with the door closed.

-CURIOUS PETS:  Keep pets away from costume-making areas, where sequins or buttons can be swallowed.  Scissors used for cutting patterns, or knives used for carving jack o’lanterns, can harm your pet.  Also remember to keep pets away from a candle-illuminated jack o’lantern.  Halloween has become a popular season for decorations as well.  Keep decorations out of your pet’s reach, or securely attached in place to prevent your pet from pulling the decorations down.  Swallowing a decorative object may cause intestinal problems and present a potential emergency.

-KEEP CURRENT ID ON PETS: Exuberant or nervous pets may bolt out doors opened for trick-or-treat candy handouts. Ensure they are wearing proper identification (even if they are microchipped) in case they become lost. Collars are available for purchase at the SPCA Petique, located at the 300 Harlem Rd., West Seneca shelter, and other pet supply shops. If you lose or find a pet, visit the SPCA’s Lost & Found page for tips on what to do next.

Contact the SPCA Serving Erie County with any questions or concerns: 716-875-7360.

SPCA’s ‘Name Your Own Price’ October Adoption Special >>

NAME YOUR OWN ADOPTION PRICES THROUGHOUT OCTOBER AT THE SPCA SHELTER & OFF-SITE LOCATIONS! 

OCTOBER IS ADOPT-A-DOG MONTH!
All month long, name your own dog adoption prices for dogs 1 year or older!
Plus, each week, name your own adoption price of “special guest” animals!

See all animals available for adoption by clicking the image below!

Shelter Animals Count Releases COVID-19 Impact 3-Year Comparison Report

September 30, 2021 — From ShelterAnimalsCount.org, an independent nonprofit that is home to The National Database of sheltered animal statistics, providing facts and enabling insights to save lives:

Shelter Animals Count (SAC), The National Database of animal sheltering statistics, enables fact-based insights to improve animal welfare in the United States.

SAC just released its latest report analyzing data for the first halves of the last three years (2019, 2020 and 2021). The report compares data from the first six months of 2019, 2020 and 2021 to look at pandemic-related trends in animal welfare.

Three hundred forty one animal welfare organizations across the United States provided complete data for the 18 months covered in the study, and only that data was included in the report.

This report provides clues as to whether 2021 numbers are following a predictable trend as we move towards a “new normal,” or if things are still abnormal due to special market behavior. Based on the analysis, it appears that 2021 is following a normal pre-pandemic trend so far.

More people are keeping their pets, based on intake numbers remaining at pandemic level lows overall, and an almost insignificant increase in owner surrender since the pandemic began.

Read the entire article here >>

See the full report here >>

 

Click the image below for more details!


Download an employment application

Please send completed application to The SPCA Serving Erie County, c/o Human Resources, 300 Harlem Road, West Seneca, NY 14224.

Click here to see current volunteer position openings!

 

 

October’s Subaru Loves Pets Campaign at Northtown Will Benefit Animals at the SPCA Serving Erie County

September 29, 2021
By: SPCA Chief Communications Officer Gina Lattuca

Northtown Subaru in Amherst is celebrating Adopt-A-Shelter-Dog Month this October in a different way…in about 3,100 different ways, to be exact! Plus, they’re letting the cats join in the celebration.

For every dog or cat adopted at the SPCA Serving Erie County this October, Northtown Subaru will donate  $100 to the SPCA as part of the Subaru Loves Pets campaign! The donation will be made for up to 31 animals, one for each day of the month!

Subaru is a long-standing partner of a national animal cruelty prevention society, and since 2008 has helped to support more than 1500 adoption events that helped approximately 57,000 animal nationwide.

This year, Northtown Subaru, located at 3930 Sheridan Dr. in Amherst, will keep Subaru’s donation local, and by donating to the SPCA Serving Erie County, Northtown Subaru will be assisting homeless animals right here in our community.

“Northtown Subaru is excited to add the October Adopt-A-Thon program to our annual sponsorship efforts along with the Subaru Share the Love program to support the Erie County SPCA,” said, Thomas Riggs, general gales manager of Northtown Subaru. “We’re fortunate in Western New York to have such a worthy organization.”

“Partnering with the West Herr Subaru team is always an absolute pleasure and we are so grateful for their continued commitment in helping the animals in our community,” says SPCA Annual Giving Manager Phillip Weiss. “This promotion will not only help more animals get adopted but it will also earn more funds to help the animals who are in need of medical attention, food, shelter, and comfort when they have nowhere else to turn. Northtown Subaru is a true friend of animals and the SPCA Serving Erie County!”

To see available dogs and cats at the SPCA Serving Erie County, visit YourSPCA.org/adoptable-animals. Appointments to visit and adopt dogs every day, and cats on Saturdays only, are still required and can be made by calling 716-875-7360, ext. 207.

Check out the SPCA’s Vice President of Veterinary Services Melanie Rushforth’s Subaru, prepped for her move to New York State last year! Melanie says, “My trusty Outback got me, 4 cats, one dog, and houseplants from WA to NY during a pandemic!” Another reason we’re thrilled to be the beneficiaries of this Northtown Subaru campaign!

 

 

The SPCA Serving Erie County has been awarded a $4,000 grant from the ASPCA® (The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals®) and Subaru through their Subaru Loves Pets program to help with adoption preparation for cats and dogs. Beginning on October 1, the grant funding will help the SPCA subsidize essential lifesaving services such as spay/neuter surgeries, vaccinations, initial worming, flea control medication, and microchipping which are crucial resources to the SPCA’s operations.

“We estimate that 30 cats and 19 dogs will be made ready for adoption using this funding,” said Chief Development Officer Jennifer Gurz. “We are continually inspired by the dedication and generosity of the ASPCA® and Subaru, who value pets as much as we do.”

HAUNTED WOODS WALK BENEFITS SPCA SERVING ERIE COUNTY

Join the 4th Annual Haunted Woods Walk to benefit the SPCA Serving Erie County!

Bring the entire family on this 1-hour guided tour and bonfire (weather-permitting) happening October 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, 23, 29, and 30 at 1660 Orchard Park Road, West Seneca. Tours begin at 7 p.m.

Presale tickets only are available for $5;  just call 716-826-4133 to reserve your space(s) now!

One hundred percent of the proceeds benefit the SPCA Serving Erie County.

Find additional information here >>

(Please, no costumes, masks, or alcoholic beverages.)

SPCA DOG ADOPTIONS REOPEN AFTER TEMPORARY PAUSE THIS MONTH

UPDATE, SEPTEMBER 21 — Dog adoptions will reopen today at the SPCA Serving Erie County.

This comes to us from SPCA Vice President of Veterinary Services Melanie Rushforth:

“Starting 9/21, the SPCA Serving Erie County will slowly reopen our canine adoption center to facilitate adoptions of the recovered or exposed and quarantined dogs to help reduce our population.

The SPCA Serving Erie County has recently seen multiple cases of complicated upper respiratory disease including life-threatening pneumonia.  Our testing so far identified Canine Pneumovirus as well as Canine Adenovirus 2 and Mycoplasma cynos on Idexx Respiratory PCR.  These dogs were all vaccinated on intake with a 5-way DHPP and an intranasal trivalent Bordetella vaccine.    With the assistance of Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Program at University of Florida we were able to obtain more information on this newer virus, and wanted to share as much information as possible in case this is running through the general population.

Canine Pneumovirus

-First identified in 2010
-Considered part of CIRD (Canine Infectious Respiratory Disease Complex) “kennel cough” which also includes Bordetella, Canine Adenovirus, Canine parainfluenza
-Incubation period <1 week – avg 2 to 5 days
-ShedS <10 days and starts prior to visible clinical signs
-Recovery 1 to 2 weeks
-Isolation of cases is key to preventing additional cases – increases in cases are likely due to importation of dogs from higher density areas and overcrowding in shelter
-There is no vaccine nor likely to be one
-Treatment is symptomatic – treat for cough, secondary infections, pneumonia; most recover with minimal interventionWe treated our shelter dogs’ pneumonia cases with Baytril and Clavamox for 14 days, but Doxycycline seemed to help clear the Mycoplasma. Each dog in our care was quarantined for 10 days minimum to assess for symptoms.  Only one bulldog required in hospital IV fluid and antibiotic therapy as well as nebulization.

The SPCA Serving Erie County worked with local municipalities and foster homes to halt the physical intake of dogs on 9/9 when we identified multiple cases.  We have been diligently monitoring the situation, treating aggressively and no new pneumonia cases have been identified in more than a week.   We have rescheduled local dog surrenders due to this issue and will be prioritizing the local community needs before we consider bringing in transport dogs from other states.

Concerning cats, Panleukopenia is also currently going through the stray/public feline population at a significant rate.  We experienced an exposure situation in the shelter a few weeks back but were able to quickly identify and isolate.  Our cat adoption center is open and currently doing well.  We are being vigilant with intake testing for this disease to prevent exposures.  (Incidentally, ringworm has also been seen at increased rates in the stray/public population.) ”

In an effort to properly address the pneumonia affecting our shelter population, the SPCA consulted directly with Clinical Assistant Professor in Shelter Medicine and Director of the Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Program Dr. Cynda Crawford at the University of Florida. Dr. Crawford’s areas of expertise include diagnosis, treatment, management, and prevention of infectious diseases in dogs and cats in sheltering facilities. She focuses on the diagnosis and management of viruses and bacteria that cause respiratory infections in shelter dogs. Dr. Crawford’s accomplishments include discovery of canine influenza virus and development of the canine influenza vaccine. Educational achievements include partnering with Dr Julie Levy to develop the Professional Certificate in Shelter Medicine for advanced training of veterinary students in the knowledge and skills to serve as veterinarians in shelters.

Rushforth added, “In learning about the situation affecting animal health at the SPCA, Dr. Crawford commented that this is not unique to our facility, and nationwide, shelters are facing significant challenges with infectious diseases and overpopulation issues as well as staffing shortages. Dr. Crawford also commended our quick response to the medical situation faced at our shelter, and called our ability to reopen adoptions in this period of time good news and a sign that the situation is being managed properly.”



September 9, 2021
— This week, we experienced more than one case of dog pneumonia at the SPCA Serving Erie County.

The SPCA is responding to this in a number of different ways, including a change in how staff members and volunteers interact with animals in the building.

We are carefully observing the animals for any early signs of illness and immediately administering early treatment if necessary, and expanding our deep-cleaning protocols to rectify this situation.

There’s quite a bit involved in containing and clearing the shelter of an infectious disease, but it’s imperative we do so to protect our current population while not putting animals outside the shelter at risk. This is why we’ve chosen to pause dog adoptions.

“Outbreaks of this nature are unfortunately not uncommon in animal sheltering, especially when part of our mission is to serve sick and injured animals,” says SPCA Vice President of Veterinary Services Melanie Rushforth. “Our team of professional caretakers has increased safety protocols to ensure we contain this, and our quick response will have a positive effect on the health of both our current and future population.”

Some unfamiliar with infectious diseases may consider pausing dog adoptions an over-the-top response to the situation, but SPCA Serving Erie County representatives believe the situation calls for this extreme of a response. We cannot take a chance on someone transporting the virus on shoes or clothing simply by walking through our kennels, thus putting animals at home at risk. And we know we cannot place our dogs in homes right now if there is a chance they may have been infected.

The choice to pause dog adoptions for a minimum of one week gives us time to monitor the health of our dogs while fully clearing the shelter of this illness.

“We encourage all pet owners to stay up-to-date on preventive medicine for their pets,” Rushforth added. “We all play a role in decreasing a pandemic of any nature.”

At the end of next week officials at the SPCA will reevaluate the situation and determine whether dog adoptions need to remain paused beyond September 19. While it’s possible the pause date may have to be extended, we of course are hoping this will not be necessary.

Thank you for your patience and understanding in this matter.

–Gina Lattuca, SPCA Serving Erie County Chief Communications Officer