The PA Department of Agriculture has sourced the following guidelines to help petowners protect both themselves and their pets during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Firstly, pet owners are encouraged to buy pet food and supplies as they normally would,without stockpiling, so that all pet owners can continue to have reliable access.
Pet owners are encouraged to do the following:
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. Practice social distancing when walking or exercising pets.
Check in on neighbors (while practicing social distancing) who may need help caring for their pets.
If your pets have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, it is recommended to give them a bath and limit their contact with anyone under quarantine.
Pet owners are reminded to wash hands frequently throughout the day with hot water and soap for a minimum of 20 seconds.
Be sure all vaccines are up to date in the event boarding becomes necessary.
Ensure medications are documented with dosages and administration directions, including the prescription and the contact information for your veterinarian.
Pets should have identification: collar with dog license and rabies tag or any other vanity style tag with owner information. Information can also be placed onthe pet’s cage dependingon the type of pet.
Place a list of pets in the home on your front door for emergency responders. Include a description of each animal, location in home, or on the property.
Our pets are a great source of comfort and joy. Taking a few precautionary steps will help ensure their safety and your peace of mind in the midst of any crisis.
Thanks to a generous contribution from the Josephine and Evelyn S. Smith Foundation, the Bucks County SPCA’s team of humane police officers has a reliable new vehicle for responding to more than 500 calls for help each year.
The foundation’s investment allowed the BCSPCA the opportunity to buy a new Toyota RAV4, replacing a 9-year-old vehicle with extensive repair needs. Humane police officers are on the road 7 days a week covering hundreds of miles crisscrossing the county responding to calls. For animals in Bucks County, the new vehicle means help is at the ready 365 days a year.
“In 2019 we saw a huge spike in cruelty complaints, court cases, and animals needing to be rescued from cruelty or neglect,” reported Linda Reider, executive director of the Bucks County SPCA. “Our team rescued 545 animals last year, nearly triple the number rescued in 2018. From very large hoarding cases, to a single animal cruelly treated, response time can make all the difference. It’s critical that our humane police officers have a reliable vehicle so that each complaint is investigated as quickly as possible.”
The BCSPCA investigates cases of abuse and neglect for domestic and farm animals anywhere in Bucks County. Our specially trained team of humane police officers respond to every complaint received, enforcing the state’s animal cruelty laws.
One call can save a life.
If you suspect an animal is being neglected or treated cruelly, please call our 24-hour tip line 215-794-7425 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. All tips are confidential.
The BCSPCA has served the animals and people of Bucks County since its incorporation by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in 1912. Our organization was founded by a small but determined group of citizens who patrolled the county, initially investigating cruelty to farm animals. Unchanged since 1912 is our commitment to make Bucks County the most humane community possible, knowing well that it benefits not only animals, but people too.
BREAKING NEWS: Late in the evening yesterday, Bucks County SPCA’s Chief Humane Police Officer, Nikki Thompson rescued 24 sick cats found living in an unheated car in Morrisville. She had been searching for the vehicle for two days. An online tip from a concerned citizen enabled her to pinpoint its location.
What she found was disturbing. The cats were cold, thirsty, underweight and in poor condition. They were immediately transported to the warmth and safety of the BCSPCA’s shelter in Lahaska where they gratefully emptied multiple water and food bowls. All the animals will be examined by the organization’s veterinary team and begin specific treatments to help them recover.
The cats’ owner reportedly collected the animals from the property of an apartment building. Our organization negotiated the surrender of all 24 cats, which means once they return to health, they can be placed for adoption without further legal action. We will continue to work with the individual to prevent a repeat of this kind of hoarding situation.
BCSPCA’s Executive Director Linda Reider expressed gratitude for the quick work of the community to help put a stop to the suffering of these poor cats. “We are grateful for people who speak up on behalf of those who have no voice. Thanks to a tip received by Officer Thompson, two dozen sick and hungry cats were spared another night of exposure to below-freezing temperatures. They are now safe and warm, and getting much-needed medical care from our team. In 2019, we rescued a record-breaking 600 animals from cruelty and neglect. Our hope is that far fewer animals require our lifesaving services in 2020, but, as always, we are ready 24 hours a day to respond to calls for help anywhere in Bucks County.”
You can help today by donating to our Animal Relief Fund which provides food, medical treatment and ongoing care for animals rescued through animal cruelty investigations. Donations can be made online at https://www.bcspca.org/support/donate-online/
by phone at 215-794-7425, or by visiting our shelters in Lahaska and Quakertown.
Bucks County SPCA’s most famous best buddies are melting hearts around the globe.
Waffles the mini-horse and Hemingway the goose were rescued by our humane officers in July. The pair let us know right from the start that they are bonded friends not to be separated. While recovering in our comfortable barn in Quakertown, they were featured in a playful video about their unique inter-species friendship. The story has gone viral online (170,000+ views) and on television.
From Good Morning America to NPR to Canadian national television, Waffles and Hemingway have brought smiles to countless faces and shone a spotlight on the important work of animal rescue and sheltering. Shelters like the Bucks County SPCA are not just about saving cats and dogs, but a broad variety of animals in need.
We’ve been asked by Pinellas County Animal Services to accept more than two dozen dogs to help make room in their shelters for local pets in the wake of devastating Hurricane Irma. Early on September 14 three members of our team hit the road for Largo, Florida, transporting dog crates and requested medical supplies. They’ll return on Sunday with a truck full of dogs in need of new homes. All the dogs were at the shelter before the storm hit. Flood waters are receding, but the recovery will be a long one. We’re proud to be part of this important work and thankful for the support of our community. Thanks to your response, the full cost of transport and medical supplies has been covered. Thank you!
Co-owners Michelle Hawkins-Pena and Billy Pena pled guilty to animal cruelty charges on August 29, 2017, and surrendered three horses, one pot-bellied pig, and six chickens to the Bucks County SPCA. The animals were rescued following a several months long investigation into reports of animal cruelty and neglect at the property rented by the couple in Bedminster Township.
“The greatest joy in a case like this is seeing the animals transform during their recovery and go on to live healthy lives,” said BCSPCA Chief Humane Society Police Officer Nikki Thompson following the conviction.
The animals were removed by the BCSPCA with the help of volunteers and neighbors on July 28, 2017. They have since been receiving care at the BCSPCA’s Upper Bucks Animal Care Center under the direction of veterinarians specializing in these specific animals. After just four weeks of providing proper food, water, and basic medical care, the horses have gained weight and their conditions improved dramatically. The pig also has health issues and is improving under treatment.
“This is the best of all possible outcomes,” said BCSPCA Executive Director Linda Reider. “We are thrilled to have the animals in safe hands and a conviction of animal cruelty against the owners. The BCSPCA will continue caring for these animals so that they make a full recovery. Donations toward their substantial food and medical expenses are greatly appreciated.” Give now online (select Care of Bedminster Horses) or by check sent to BCSPCA, PO Box 277, Lahaska, PA 18931.
The animals will remain in the custody of the BCSPCA until they are cleared medically and the time limit for appeal has passed.
After an intensive investigation, the Bucks County SPCA (BCSPCA) removed 3 horses, 6 chickens and a pot-bellied pig from a property in the 600 block of Sweetbriar Road in Perkasie, Bedminster Township on July 28, 2017. Animal cruelty charges are pending against the owners of the animals, Michelle Hawkins-Pena and Billy Pena.
“We appreciate the support and collaboration of the community and the Bedminster Police Department. Despite ordering the owner to provide necessary nutrition and veterinary care, the animals conditions continued to decline and a search warrant was served,” said Humane Society Police Officer Nikki Thompson. “A case like this one requires patience and multiple visits to collect sufficient evidence to maximize the likelihood of a conviction of animal cruelty.”
With the help of several volunteers from the community the animals were transported to BCSPCA’s barn facility in Quakertown, PA. They were immediately examined by an equine veterinarian who is now overseeing their care. “The road may be a long one, but we are optimistic that all of the animals will make a full recovery and go on to enjoy greener pastures.” said Linda Reider BCSPCA Executive Director.
Contributions to help cover food and medical expenses are needed. Donations can be made online or by check sent to BCSPCA, PO Box 277, Lahaska, PA 18931.
Lahaska, PA – Acting on a tip from the community, the Bucks County SPCA served a search warrant at the home of Doreen “Dee” Stoia of the 3600 block of Nancy Ward Circle, Doylestown, PA. Ms. Stoia runs a cattery called “Elitepurrs Persians” out of the residence where she breeds and shows Persian cats. The interior of the house was found to be unsanitary, and each of the 11 adult cats were found to have flea infestations, matted coats and other physical maladies.
“It’s hard to imagine that someone who enters the show ring with prize winning cats would allow the same cats to live under these conditions.” says Nikki Thompson, Chief Humane Society Police Officer for Bucks County SPCA.
The cats are currently receiving care under the direction of the BCSPCA veterinarian and will be held as evidence until a trial can be scheduled. Animal cruelty charges against Ms. Stoia are expected to be filed in the next few days.
“Bucks County cares deeply about animals and we will not stand idly by when they are abused or neglected,” says Linda Reider, Executive Director of the Bucks County SPCA. “These cats are now receiving the proper care and attention they deserve.”
Inquiries about the case should be directed to BCSPCA Chief Cruelty Investigator Nikki Thompson at 215-794-7425 x107.
BCSPCA will be hosting our first ever Chip N’ Tag event on Saturday, June 18th from 10am-2pm. This low-cost event is co-sponsored by the Pennsylvania Bureau of Dog Law and with volunteer veterinary staff from Quakertown Veterinary Clinic.
Chip N’ Tag will allow community members to have their dogs micro-chipped, vaccinated for rabies and licensed for a reasonable cost. No appointment necessary for this dog only event.
I’ve been volunteering in the Lahaska Cat Room every Friday for about five years. During that time I’ve met many older cats and have fallen in love with all of them, but I was especially touched by a group of cats who joined us not long ago after their elderly owner’s health prohibited her from keeping them any longer. Within this larger troupe were siblings – many years ago the woman had opened her home to a pregnant cat and the kittens stayed on and settled in. I guess you could say that the owner and the cats had grown old together.
One of our jobs in the Cat Room is to let the cats out of their cages for a time each day to stretch their legs and engage in a little playing and exploring, with up to four allowed out at any one time. When several are out at the same time, it gives us an opportunity to observe how they interact with one another – some may be adopted into homes where there is already a pet or two so knowing if a cat is agreeable and accepting of other felines is useful information we can share with prospective adopters.
Each of these senior siblings was living in a separate cage, although a couple of them could see one another across the room. At fourteen years of age, they were calm and friendly and enjoyed the attention we provided. One day I decided to let the six of them out together (yes, I broke the rules…just this once). As I went around the Cat Room opening cage doors, each cat took his/her time to assess this new opportunity, jump out and stretch a bit. Then one by one they found one another, forming a small, slightly disorganized group – it looked like a cat cocktail party. Immediately these gentle souls started to greet one another, touching cheeks and leaning body against body – it was obvious that they not only recognized their former roommates, but (and here I’ll risk attributing human feelings to them) loved one another and were enjoying the reunion of their little cat community. They were such a joy to watch – I wanted to take them in my arms and give them a big hug for being such sweet kitties (I didn’t).
I often wonder what our cats think when they find themselves uprooted from their homes and living in our Cat Room. Some of the younger cats seem to see an adventure, a new place to explore. Our senior cats sometimes withdraw, challenging us to earn their trust and help them through this major life transition. As many of our adopters already know, older cats make wonderful pets – and the good news is that each of the five cat siblings now has a new home. Jasmin, the mother, is waiting at the Lahaska location for that special person who is ready to open their heart to a senior cat. I’ve lived with enough senior cats to know that they can be resilient and adaptable, even though it might take them a little longer to adjust to situations – it’s so worth it to see them happy again. I hope potential adopters won’t reject an available cat based solely on his age – you will be missing out on a wonderful and loving companion.