Ashley Lindbeck, Director of Animal Care on a transport
The shortage of affordable, pet-friendly rentals, high deposits, and breed or size restrictions have resulted in a dire situation for animal shelters across the country. The Fredericksburg SPCA is just one of many facilities that are struggling to keep up with the demand for their resources. The summer months are especially challenging as animal shelters reach maximum capacity. Compounded by the scarcity of housing for families, it is a disastrous situation. The Fredericksburg SPCA is receiving numerous requests from pet owners and other facilities across Virginia, and even across state lines, with desperate pleas for intake to prevent euthanasia. The Shelter Animals Count National Database reveals that total community intakes have increased by 3%, but outcomes have not kept up. Non-live outcomes for dogs have nearly doubled in Q1 2023 compared to 2021.
“In May, the Fredericksburg SPCA intake requests from the public looking to surrender their animals doubled,” said Ashley Lindbeck, Director of Animal Care for the Fredericksburg SPCA. “56% of intake requests were because of living situations, 23% were behavior, 16% medical (human), and 5% medical (animal). This trend has carried over to June, with no sign of slowing down in July.”
Katie Bates, P.E.T.S Program Coordinator doing a Mobile Meal Delivery
The Fredericksburg SPCA has implemented several programs to assist families in keeping their beloved pets at home. However, the shelter has yet to find a solution to the challenge of affordable and accessible housing. The shelter encourages the public to take advantage of its programs and spread the word.
- The Fred SPCA offers a free 30-minute behavior consultation with a CACTP-certified behavior coordinator for pet owners who require assistance with training. The program also provides a variety of reasonably priced behavior classes and once-a-week puppy socials to help begin socialization from an early age.
- The People Empowered Through Support (P.E.T.S. Program) offers a free pet pantry for food and supplies and affordable veterinary care when funds are available.
- The Pet Pantry has extended its hours and introduced Mobile Meal deliveries to reach more members of the community, especially those with transportation or mobility issues. This extra bit of free pet food can help alleviate financial burdens until payday.
“We’ve created these programs based on the needs of our community, and we’re able to invest in them because of the support we receive,” explains Von Young, Director of Communications. “If you can’t adopt, there are still many ways to contribute positively, such as volunteering for mobile meal deliveries, donating essential supplies, or attending one of our events like our upcoming Fur Ball Gala.”
The Fred SPCA offers several adoption specials to help find loving homes for pets. With fee-waived Pet-of-the-Month animals, bonded pairs available on BOGO, and reduced-fee seniors, there are plenty of opportunities to find your new furry companion. Additionally, veterans can adopt fee-waived animals through the Fred SPCA’s partnership with Pets for Patriots.
Beth Tumlin, Behavior Coordinator training Coop for Canine Good Citizen Certification.
Leilani found a new home after being surrendered by her owner who could not care for her any longer.