The city’s homeless animal situation is in a serious crisis. The shelter run by the Animal Care and Control Team (ACCT) powered by the Pennsylvania Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (PSPCA) is the only intake center for the city’s animals. As of last weekend, the shelter was at capacity. The cat cages, the dog kennels and all of the isolation space for all of the new mothers and sick and injured dogs and cats were full. Every single spot was taken. This week alone, over 120 dogs have come in and hundreds more cats. There is no room for them and they just keep coming. Rescues have taken everyone they can and all existing foster homes are filled with spare dogs and cats in addition to the family’s own pets. The only option left is daily euthanasia of healthy, young, friendly and sometimes fully trained pets. They aren’t dogs given up for behavioral or temperament issues. Nothing is wrong with the majority medically. Their owners just decided it wasn’t working out and they didn’t want their pets anymore. Some are purebred, some are young puppies, some are little, others are big. Some like other dogs or other cats. Some of the dogs and cats have are good with all other species, including people of all ages and sizes and animals of any kind. And they are all available and waiting to get out. With such large numbers coming in and out and being put down, the animals are stressed and they really need our help. As a city, we need to take responsibility of these animals. So, now is the time do our part in society and come together to save some lives.
For these animals to survive another day and the long weekend, they need to get out. Adopting and fostering are both rewarding in their own ways. Doing either saves two lives, the one of the animal you take out of the shelter and the one who fills the space. The ACCT team and volunteers are extraordinarily supportive to their foster homes and food has been available free to fosters the majority of the winter and periodically all year. The medical support is extensive for foster homes and the moral support is unparalleled. Medical care is provided at no extra cost by ACCT as well as behavior, training resources and adoption counseling. While a pet is in a foster home, he or she is also on the ACCT/PSPCA Petfinder pages and many fellow fosters and volunteers help get the word out about each and every one. Available dogs and cats are posted on Facebook, Twitter, Craigslist and more. The foster home can also do their own marketing and direct potential adopters to the application here. Check out the fostering brochure and application for more information.
The benefits of adoption and fostering are endless. And adopting any adult dog (over 6 months) right now is only $30! That includes vaccines, microchip, spaying/neutering. For any questions about ACCT dogs or cats, fostering, adopting or volunteering, please contact Natalie Smith, Manager of Life Saving at [email protected] or Jill Sweeney at [email protected] Or go to ACCT at 111 W. Hunting Park Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19140. Also, call (267) 385-3800. Adoption hours are Monday to Friday, 1 pm – 8 pm, Saturday and Sunday, 10 am – 5 pm. For fostering, hours are Monday – Sunday, 9 am – 6pm and after hours by appointment.