The Appalachian SPCA was formed by a group of committed volunteers with one specific goal in mind: to end the needless euthanasia of healthy, adoptable shelter animals. Animals in Appalachia face an unsettling plight due to a lack of financial resources amongst many owners, little to no protective legislation or public education, and animal shelters without the resources to provide much help to their charges. The Appalachian SPCA’s volunteers instituted immediate change in the area. By utilizing the local media to advertise the need for foster homes and monetary donations, the board and membership base began to grow. With the help of foster families, transporters, monetary and equipment donations, successful fundraisers, and countless hours spent with local government officials and shelter employees, the small group managed to save over 400 animals in its first year.
To date, in keeping with its commitment to saving lives, Appalachian SPCA has treated several heartworm-positive dogs, arranged for countless life saving amputations, treated puppies with Parvo and distemper, worked with other rescues to transport dogs with specific medical needs to areas with better vet care, and paid thousands of dollars in vet bills in order to save and improve lives. They ensure that all animals in the organization’s care are spayed, neutered, up to date on immunizations, heartworm negative and current on prevention. The group’s volunteers have found loving homes for dogs with various special needs and they take a special interest in saving elderly animals from euthanasia.
During recent flash flooding experienced in the group’s area, Appalachian SPCA answered the call for help from owners who were displaced by the flooding. Housing was provided for displaced animals while owners sought temporary shelter. The group also donated over 3000 lbs. of dog and cat food to flood victims and helped with transporting animals out of dangerous areas.
In the near future, Appalachian SPCA hopes to create a low cost spay/neuter option for the rural Appalachian area, and the group also hopes to implement a trap, neuter, release program for cats. Controlling the pet population is a major focus. Recently, the organization was happy to learn that through its efforts, the euthanasia of healthy, adoptable animals was halted entirely for two consecutive months in a high kill, rural shelter which previously was accustomed to a 60% kill rate. Success like this encourages the group to continue its positive impact and work toward ending all needless euthanasia in its area.
SPCA International is thrilled that our Shelter of the Week grant to Appalachian SPCA will help further the goals of this brand-new, active force in the community. We wish them further successes in their efforts to eliminate euthanasia of homeless companion animals in Appalachia.