2018 SPCHS Shelter Annual Report
SPCHS is thankful for the support we receive from our community. This community along with our great staff and volunteers have been essential to our success for over 20 years. SPCHS’s success can be attributed not only to our fantastic shelter manager, staff, and volunteers; but, also our working Board and Advisory Council members. We are thankful to have such a great team and community support.
Shelter Animal Count: In 2018, our shelter took in 582 cats and dogs, finding forever homes for 403 and returning 82 to their owners with the remaining balance at the shelter waiting for their forever home or transferred to another agency. Our shelter manager and adoption counselors work with potential adopters helping them find the perfect match. Details of our 2018 intake and outcome are published and available. As a no-kill shelter, SPCHS had a 97% live release rate in 2018 calculated by dividing live outcomes by total outcomes. Discovery Coast Real Estate sponsored numerous cat adoptions and several individuals sponsored dog and cat adoptions allowing us to find homes for many of our cats and dogs. As always, our cats and dogs receive their vaccinations including rabies and are altered before adoption. All dogs are micro-chipped and we have now stated micro-chipping our cats.
Assistance Programs: In support of our mission to reduce pet overpopulation through community outreach, SPCHS funded reduced cost spay/neuters for 153 household dogs and cats. Thanks to a grant from the “We Love Our Pets” license plate program many of the household spay/neuters were provided with just a $10 co-pay. Our Community Cat Advocate assisted and educated many community members with the trap, neuter/spay, return (TNR) process for community (feral) cats. With her support, 39 community (feral) cats were altered and returned to their colony or location.
Cat and Dog Enrichment: Providing the cats and dogs in our facility the best experience possible until a forever home is found for them is our number one priority. Our Cat Advocate was kept busy with many kitten strays and surrenders. We are thankful to all of our foster homes caring for these many kitten litters including our Cat Advocate. Our Dog Advocate leads the dog walker volunteers bringing the team together for training, scheduling, and sharing of information and experiences with the dogs. She ensures the dogs are walked every day with most dogs walked two to three times per day. Cati Foss and Kjirsten Fastaben with Arnicadia DogTraining presented a half day seminar this fall to our volunteer dog walkers. They discussed behavioral issues specific to shelter dogs and demonstrated some basic training techniques to help make our pups more adoptable. Cati and Kjirsten would like to make this a quarterly event. Our Dog Advocate continues to work with these professional trainers to assist with dogs that require some extra training and focus to increase their adoptability.
Infrastructure Upgrades: Thanks to grants from local foundations, we were able to complete several infrastructure improvements to our cat isolation room, bathing area, clinic area, and the shelter building. The cages in our cat isolation room were replaced with cages that will more effectively reduce the spread of illnesses. As with many shelters, we experienced a number of respiratory and ringworm cases this year and the new isolation cages will assist in management of the illnesses. Our clinic area was moved with improvements to the clinic table and storage of supplies. The outside of our shelter building was painted along with much needed repair of fascia boards. A shelter supporter provided a beautiful new sign for the building.
2018 Challenges: The minimum wage increases and our medical costs continued to be a challenge in 2018. Ensuring we had adequate funds to support our operational needs was a major focus of the fundraising committee. We are very thankful for our community support and our volunteers that help us meet the financial needs to support the cats and dogs at the shelter.
2019 Priorities: Our priorities for 2019 include reducing the length of stay for some of our more difficult to adopt dogs and cats, continuing habitat enrichment for the cats and dogs, continuing improvements to our adoption friendly atmosphere, painting the outside of the shelter annex, and redesigning our website to a more friendly and easier to maneuver site.
We are looking forward to a terrific 2019! Thank you to our community, staff, and volunteers!
Sandy Clancy, Board President