Philadelphia, PA (April 10, 2018) –The Pennsylvania SPCA (PSPCA) is proud to announce that it has been awarded a $70,000 grant from PetSmart Charities, the leading funder of animal welfare in North America, to build a new Protective Custody Housing Unit for animals seized from cruelty and neglect. The PetSmart Charities grant will help improve the quality of life of hundreds of animals rescued each year by the PSPCA’s Humane Law Enforcement Team.
The Pennsylvania SPCA receives nearly 10,000 calls annually to its cruelty hotline to rescue animals suffering from cruelty and neglect. These calls amount to thousands of animals being seized, many of whom are not signed over into the organization’s custody. Instead, these animals are legally required to remain in the shelter, away from the adoptable animals, until their court case resolves. This process can take years, and dogs in particular are found to deteriorate both behaviorally and socially with lengthy shelter stays.
Through the PetSmart Charities Grant, the Pennsylvania SPCA hopes to improve the quality of life for these animals during their stay, and ultimately provide them with the best outcome possible – placement into loving homes. Thanks to the grant, construction began in 2017 on the new housing at the Pennsylvania SPCA’s North Philadelphia headquarters. The completed unit will include 27 large, and 10 extra-large Mason kennels featuring separate spaces for sleeping, eating and pottying to foster independence and prevent housetraining regression. Isolation panels and guillotine closures reduce reactivity and stress triggers that can do serious mental harm to dogs in the long term.
Additional upgrades include plumbing hookups to each kennel, sound-proofing tiling and the installation of a sound system so animals can listen to music. The 37 kennels have the ability to turn into 74 single kennels for emergency situations, including large-scale rescues by the PSPCA’s Humane Law Enforcement Team.
“We are so grateful to PetSmart Charities for investing in such an important piece of our lifesaving mission,” said Julie Klim, CEO of the Pennsylvania SPCA. “Through this new Protective Custody Housing Unit, we will not only have the ability to save more dogs to begin with, but to ensure that they have the best quality of life while in our care, which will ultimately lead to them to succeed in their new homes once they find their loving forever families.”
“Alleviating animal cruelty and hoarding is a critical need in animal welfare, a need that Pennsylvania SPCA has recognized and is working to resolve with its new Protective Custody Housing Unit,” said Sima Thakkar, regional relationship manager at PetSmart Charities. “With their help, more dogs in need in the Philadelphia area will have a safe and nurturing environment to recover within.”
For more information on the PSPCA and its lifesaving mission, visit: pspca.org.
About the Pennsylvania SPCA
Since 1867, the Pennsylvania SPCA, a non-profit 501(c)3 organization headquartered at 350 East Erie Avenue, Philadelphia, has been dedicated to preventing animal cruelty and rescuing animals from abuse and neglect. The Pennsylvania SPCA's lifesaving programs for animals include a low-cost veterinary clinic, low-cost spay and neuter services, pet adoption facilities, and the Pennsylvania SPCA Humane Law Enforcement Department. For more information about adopting, donating or volunteering, please call (215) 426.6300 or visit www.pspca.org.