SPCA Summer Camp Offers Three Active Options for 2020

July 7, 2020
By:  SPCA Chief Communications Officer Gina Lattuca

The SPCA Serving Erie County’s annual Summer Kindness Camp program has been modified to teach important lessons while keeping kids active, entertained, safe, healthy, and distant!

Three different camp options will be offered this summer:
KINDNESS CAMP: The Backpacks
KINDNESS CAMP: The Backpacks OFF-LEASH! (Update 7/15: Off-Leash Registration Closed)
KINDNESS CAMP: The Live, Virtual, Veterinary Experience

KINDNESS CAMP: The Backpacks is a non-interactive kindness camp experience providing children with fun, engaging, hands-on activities and games that can be enjoyed at their convenience. Backpacks include one week’s worth of materials and instructions needed for the themed activities, art projects, educational handouts, and fun swag items…all children will need are safe scissors, glue, and a table cover for messy projects! There are three backpack themes available for $30 per backpack for children ages 5-12 and 12-15. See more on backpacks and register for your child’s backpack here.

KINDNESS CAMP: The Backpacks OFF-LEASH! (Update 7/15: Registration Closed) is a kindness camp with backpack projects that take place in the child’s home and yard, but the backpacks also go “off-leash” with some interactive, virtual experiences! Each day, 30-60-minute live, virtual interactions with people and animals will take place; campers will virtually meet different animals, participate in interactive games and activities, and learn lots of new things! Also included are on-demand videos, and additional, downloadable activity sheets! Themes, age ranges, dates, and costs vary; see more about KINDNESS CAMP: The Backpacks OFF-LEASH! here. (Update 7/15: Registration Closed)

KINDNESS CAMP: The Live, Virtual, Veterinary Experience is a veterinary camp series for children who love animals and are interested in exploring veterinary careers! Campers will learn what it takes to be a veterinarian through a combination of live virtual content and fun activities, plus enjoy a take-home kit of materials. They will learn how to check a pet’s vital signs, discover what heartworms are, watch an animal exam, observe a neuter surgery, and so much more. Both live, virtual experiences, Introduction to Veterinary Science and Advanced Veterinary Science, are open to children ages 9-14 and cost $120. More information, dates, and registration are available here.

All backpacks and take-home materials have been handled by healthy staff members at the SPCA who were wearing gloves and masks. All materials have been thoroughly disinfected.  Backpacks are available via curbside pick-up, delivery, or shipping.

To find more information on all three types of camp experiences and to register your child for one camp (or all three!), please visit our all new SPCA Kindness Camp page here.

The SPCA Serving Erie County has revised its COVID-19 phase adoption policies. This new policy was put into effect July 6, 2020. Please note, while we are waiving the need for adoption appointments for cats and small animals at this time, we may revert to adoption appointments for these animals again in the future. The current adoption policy is as follows:

THANK YOU FOR CONSIDERING THE SPCA SERVING ERIE COUNTY WHEN YOU DECIDED TO BRING HOME A NEW FAMILY MEMBER!

FOR YOUR PROTECTION AND OURS, THE SPCA SERVING ERIE COUNTY WILL REMAIN CONSISTENT WITH OCCUPANCY GUIDELINES DURING OUR COVID-19 RESPONSE PHASE.  FACE MASKS ARE REQUIRED!

-Except for cats, bunnies, & other small animal adoptions, an adoption appointment is required to enter the Adoptions Lobby.

-To make an adoption appointment for any type of animal besides cats, bunnies, and other small animals, please call 716-875-7360, ext. 207. Please understand it may take up to 48 business hours to receive a return call. With the exception of required “meet and greets” with pets at home, animals cannot be placed on hold.

-Beginning July 6, it is not necessary to make an adoption appointment for cats, bunnies, and other small animals ONLY. This may change at any time, and we may revert to appointment adoptions for cats/small animals.

-Upon entering the building, it is imperative that you sign in with contact information. We require the name of every guest in your party, including children, for tracing purposes.

-Three people will be allowed per guest pass in the cat room or small animal areas, which means only 3 family members or friends should come together to the SPCA to adopt. Please remember if you are planning to adopt a cat/small animal, only three people per party will be allowed on each guest pass.

-Five families (5 guest passes) will be allowed in the cat/small animal adoption areas at any given time.

-Each guest pass allows a family one hour in the cat/small animal adoption areas to help accommodate all potential adopters and increase the number of animals who find homes each day. (Please note: time limits with adoptable animals are only being enforced during our COVID-19 Response phase. Normally, we encourage visitors to spend as long as possible with an animal prior to adoption!)

-If you are here to adopt a cat, bunny, or other small animal and the maximum number of people are present in the cat/small animal rooms, you have the opportunity to wait in a small overflow area in our lobby or, if you prefer not to wait there or if that area is filled, outdoors. Your sign-in information determines the order of admission into the building. If you choose to wait outdoors, we will call you on your mobile phone when it is your turn to visit!

-Wait times will vary depending on shelter population, so please plan accordingly. Traditionally, the busiest adoption day is Saturday, so if you plan to visit Saturday, please allow yourself enough wait time and understand the cat/small animal visitation 1-hour time limit described above.

-Adoption hours remain 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The final appointment(s) for adoption will be made at 3 p.m. Our final group of potential adopters will be allowed in adoption areas one hour prior to closing.

-We may not be able to accommodate everyone on any given day. Depending on the number of people who have arrived at the shelter before you, it is possible you will not be able to see animals on the day you visit. Believe us, we don’t like it either. We’re in the business of placing these animals in new homes…including YOURS! But we understand, and hope you understand, this is for your safety as well as the safety of our volunteers and staff members. 

-See animals available for adoption on this page! Remember, our population changes several times each day, so you’ll want to check back frequently!

THANK YOU FOR YOUR PATIENCE AS WE WORK TOGETHER TO KEEP PEOPLE & ANIMALS SAFE & HEALTHY!

–Gina Lattuca, SPCA Serving Erie County Chief Communications Officer

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Updated April 11, 2021, 2021,  3:45 p.m.

ON THIS PAGE:

-Status of the SPCA Serving Erie County’s programs and services during its COVID-19 Response period;

-Tips for pets at home and information on creating a pet disaster preparedness kit;

This page will be regularly updated with the most current developments at the SPCA Serving Erie County. Please check back frequently. Thank you.





On March 20,  2020, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo named “Animal Shelters” to the list of essential businesses in NYS.  In an effort to protect community members, patrons, volunteers, and staff members, the SPCA Serving Erie County is modifying its services in the following manner. Please check back frequently as this information is rapidly changing.

ANIMAL ADOPTIONS:

-Appointments are necessary to adopt dogs and farm animals Monday – Saturday.

-Appointments are necessary to adopt cats Saturday only (no appointment needed for cat adoptions Monday – Friday).

-No appointments are  necessary to adopt any other type of animal.

Only those with adoption appointments will be able to visit and/or adopt dogs Monday – Saturday.

-Please note: due to a high volume of calls, your call requesting an adoption appointment may not be returned the same day. All calls are returned in the order they are received.

-Because our community is filled with people who love animals and want to adopt, dog adoption appointments are generally scheduled for several days, even weeks, in advance, so be sure to schedule your appointment early.

-To schedule an appointment, please call our Adoptions Desk at
716-875-7360, ext. 207, to leave your message. 

-A maximum of four people will be allowed to view animals on one guest pass.

-All visitors must come to the SPCA wearing a mask or appropriate face shield covering both nose and mouth. We ask all visitors to comply with current social distancing requirements.

See more on all COVID-era adoption guidelines and adoption appointments here >>


ANIMAL ADMISSIONS:
-The SPCA will slowly start admitting animals BY APPOINTMENT ONLY at this time. Admission appointments will be made in accordance with staff and shelter population during this updated COVID Response phase. We will also schedule appointments around the admission of animals already owned by the SPCA residing in volunteer foster homes (200+ animals) who will slowly and safely be brought back into the shelter and placed for adoption.

-Please know we do not take your patience in this matter for granted! The consideration you’ve shown us during this phase is tremendously appreciated.

-If you are calling Monday through Saturday, 8 a.m.-4 p.m., please call 716-875-7360, press 0, and ask for the Admissions Department. If you are calling Monday through Saturday, 4 p.m.-7:30 p.m., with an emergency only, please call 716-875-7360, ext. 214.

-Anyone with an appointment must come to the SPCA wearing a mask or appropriate face shield.

-At this time we are unable to assist after 7:30 p.m., however, there are emergency animal clinics in Erie County with systems in place to assist you after 7:30 p.m.

-For more information on how to proceed with either owned or outdoor cats who have kittens, please visit our #bestwithmom page.

ANIMAL EMERGENCIES, ANIMAL RESCUE, & ANIMAL CRUELTY INVESTIGATIONS:
-If you are experiencing an emergency with your animal or find that an animal is in an emergency situation, please call the SPCA Monday through Sunday, 8 a.m. – 7:30 p.m., at 716-875-7360, ext. 214.

-At this time we are unable to assist after 7:30 p.m., however, there are emergency animal clinics, animal control organizations, and law enforcement agencies in Erie County with systems in place to assist you between 7:30 p.m. and 8 a.m.

-When you call, please advise the dispatcher if you or any members of your household are experiencing flu-like symptoms. This information will ensure first responders can prepare to prevent the spread of any illnesses.

DONATIONS:
-Those wishing to make financial donations are encouraged to do so online, by phone at 716-875-7360 ext. 227, or through the mail at SPCA Serving Erie County, 300 Harlem Rd., West Seneca, NY 14224.

-Due to staffing restrictions at this time, most donation receipting is on hold.  We ask for your patience as receipts may be delayed by a few weeks.

-The SPCA is once again able to accept in-kind donations of towels, sheets, blankets, newspapers, etc. dropped off by those wearing masks at our West Seneca shelter’s Adoptions doors! Although we are not able to pick up these donations, we sincerely appreciate the time and effort made by those who think of our animals and drop off these items to us. Receipts for in-kind donations can be picked up at the time of donation drop-off.

EDUCATIONAL FARM:
Closed to the general public. Farm animal adoptions are taking place, however (see below).

-If you have farm animals or fowl you wish to surrender to the SPCA Serving Erie County,  please follow the Animal Admissions guidelines above.
-If you are ill and have farm animals or fowl to surrender, please follow the Animal Admissions guidelines above to schedule an appointment for possible pick-up.

-Individuals are able to adopt farm animals during the following hours of operation:
M – F:   10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Sat:       10 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
We are closed on Sundays.

-Those interested in adopting farm animals or fowl should call 716-875-7360, ext. 212 or 215 for more information.

END-OF-LIFE SERVICES:
-If you have made that difficult decision for your pet, the SPCA is still able to help with euthanasia services at this time BY APPOINTMENT.

-If you are calling Monday through Saturday, 8 a.m.-4 p.m., please call 716-875-7360, press 0, and ask for the Admissions Department to make your appointment. If you are calling Monday through Saturday, 4 p.m.-7:30 p.m., in an emergency euthanasia situation only, please call 716-875-7360, ext. 214.

-Information on pet euthanasia  is available here >>  

FIELD TRIPS, TOURS, OTHER GROUP VISITS:
Currently-scheduled visits have been cancelled.

HUMANE EDUCATION:
See virtual programs for children, including Tale for Two,  here >>

LIPSEY CLINIC AT THE SPCA SERVING ERIE COUNTY:
The Lipsey Clinic has reopened limited hours by appointment only, and is following strict COVID-related operating procedures. Learn more about the Lipsey Clinic and find the operating procedures here >>

PETIQUE:
OPEN to the general public Monday – Saturday, 11 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Masks covering both nose and mouth are required. The number of people shopping in the Petique at one time will remain in accordance with current county occupancy guidelines.

Curbside pick-up is available to the general public. For more information on curbside pick-up and items available, please contact the Petique: 716-875-7360, ext. 237. You may pay for your items by credit card over the phone, or have exact cash with you when you arrive at 300 Harlem Rd., West Seneca to pick up your items! When you arrive, just call the number above and we will bring your items out to you. We promise, we’ll be wearing face masks, and we ask that you wear yours as well!

-Adopting? If you have made an adoption appointment and are thinking of adopting an SPCA animal, you will be able to purchase items in the Petique Monday – Saturday, 11 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Face masks or proper face coverings are required, and two people per family will be allowed to shop at one time in the Petique.

VOLUNTEERS:
We are currently unable to accept new volunteers.
All youth volunteer attendance is postponed. There will be no new Paws for Love volunteer evaluations or orientations at this time. If you are a current volunteer, please check with your team’s coordinator for further instructions…and thank you for everything you’re doing to stay informed while you’re continuing to help our animals.

WILDLIFE:
-The Wildlife Department will be responding to animal emergencies.
-Anyone with a wild animal emergency should CALL BEFORE TOUCHING THE ANIMAL(s) OR BRINGING THE ANIMAL(s) IN!

Monday – Sunday

  • 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. please call 716-875-7360, ext. 247.
  • 8 p.m. – 8 a.m. we are closed.

-In accordance with New York State regulations, anyone with an appointment to bring an animal to the SPCA must come to the shelter wearing a mask or appropriate face shield.

At this time, other departments will operate in limited capacities. Again, this information is rapidly changing.



Can you assist ill family members or friends by caring for the household pet(s) if someone becomes ill? If so, click on the images below for full-sized infographics to share, courtesy of Animalsheltering.org:


Pertaining to pets in homes, Animalsheltering.org recommends pet owners take the following simple steps to ensure preparedness in case of illness:

– Identify a family member or friend who can care for pets if someone in the household becomes ill;

– Have crates, food, and extra supplies on hand for quick movement of pets should it become necessary;

– All animal vaccines should be up-to-date in the event boarding becomes necessary;

– Ensure all medications are documented with dosages, administering directions, and if possible, your veterinarian’s prescription;

– Ensure pets are wearing identification (collar & ID tag) or are microchipped.

The SPCA also reminds you to eliminate any contact with your pet if you are exhibiting signs of illness.

-Find a list of recommendations for SPCA Officer Tyler Robertson’s  PET DISASTER PREPAREDNESS KIT here >>

-Find SPCA Serving Erie County recommendations for properly caring for your pets during this COVID-19 Response period here >>

-Find information on equine care during the COVID-19 pandemic here >>

-For more information on your pets and COVID-19, please speak with your veterinarian.


Because information and updates are continuing to change at an incredibly rapid pace, we do not want to run the risk of providing anything less than the most current information concerning animals and COVID-19. The SPCA urges viewers of our website to seek information at any given time by speaking personally with their trusted veterinarians, or find relevant up-to-date information using one of the trusted resources we’ve cited in the past:
Centers for Disease Control and Protection (CDC)
-Humane Society Veterinary Medical Association (HSVMA)
-American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA)
-World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA)
-United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)

In a WSAVA advisory document entitled The New Coronavirus and Companion Animals, it is stated, “You should restrict contact with pets and other animals while you are sick with COVID-19, just like you would around other people,” recommending that people sick with COVID-19 limit contact with animals until more information is known about the virus. “This is a rapidly evolving situation and information will be updated as it becomes available.”


This page will be regularly updated with the most current developments at the SPCA Serving Erie County. Please check back frequently.

–Gina Lattuca, SPCA Chief Communications Officer