County has 5-year agreement with Chester County SPCA to handle stray dogs and cats
MEDIA–The Delaware County Animal Protection Board now has a 5-year contract with the Chester County SPCA to provide shelter and humane care for stray dogs and cats from Delaware County through 2017.
Delaware County Council joined with members of the Delaware County Animal Protection Board (APB) to announce that the Chester County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (CCSPCA) will continue to handle stray and lost dogs and cats from Delaware County for the next five years.
County Council Vice-Chairman Mario J. Civera Jr. said this is a positive, workable solution thatensures the humane care of dogs and cats in the event that they are lost or end up homeless.Civera, a dog owner himself who worked tirelessly to address the stray dog and cat situation eversince the Delaware County SPCA stopped accepting stray animals in 2011, announced the agreement atthe Jan. 9 County Council meeting.
“We all know how heart-breaking it is when a family pet is lost, or when any pet is abandoned,and we hope this agreement with the Chester County SPCA is an effective way of ensuring humane carefor a lost pet until it can be reunited with its owner,” Vice-Chair Civera said. “We are pleased that we have the cooperation of the majority of our municipalities and the ChesterCounty SPCA to provide a long-term solution to the stray animal situation in our County,” he said. “We are also grateful to the members of the Animal Protection Board, under the leadership of Tom Judge Jr.,who worked to find a humane solution to this difficult problem that counties across the Commonwealth struggle with. Bottom line is, this is a good solution for our municipalities, their residents and their pets.”
The eight-member APB board approved a five-year contract that extends the current Stray Animal Agreement from Jan. 1, 2013 through Dec. 31, 2017.
In 2012, the first year the CCSPCA accepted strays from Delaware County, 1,352 dogs and cats were turned over to CCSPCA by municipal police and animal control officers. Of those, 677 were dogs and 675 were cats. The CCSPCA charges the APB a fee of $250 per animal.
The municipality where the animal was found agrees to reimburse the APB for the fee. The APB contract with the CCSPCA is for a minimum of 120 animals per month.In addition to announcing the APB contract with CCSPCA, County Council approved a five-year agreement between the County and the APB to help cover the expenses when the number of animals falls below the minimum number.
Tom Judge Jr. said the APB is in the process of having municipalities sign up for the new five-year amended contract. In 2012, only three of the 49 municipalities did not participate. They were Millbourne and Rutledge boroughs and Radnor Township.
In a letter sent to CCSPCA Board Treasurer Frank Sobyak, Judge thanked the CCSPCA board andstaff at the shelter for “the professional cooperation that has been provided in helping us manage throughthe stray dog and cat issue in Delaware County. It has been a learning experience for both parties.”
Vice-Chair Civera stressed the importance of responsible pet ownership in preventing a strayanimal crisis. He urged dog owners to make sure their pet has a current dog license. When a dog has acurrent 2013 license or a lifetime license, they are automatically entered into the County’s Return A Lost Dog data base where anyone who finds a dog can simply go on to the County’s website and get theowner’s phone number.
“I have a dog myself, and she has a microchip and a lifetime license. This is the best way to ensurethat any dog that gets lost is quickly and safely returned to its owner without having to be transported tothe Chester County SPCA,” Civera said.
When a stray dog or cat is found and reported to the municipal police or animal control officer,and the owner cannot be immediately located, the animal will be transported to the Chester County SPCA, located at 1212 Phoenixville Pike, West Chester, 19380, about a 30-minute drive west of Media. The pet owner can reclaim their dog or cat at the shelter. Pet owners can visit the CCSPCA website at www.ccspca.org for all policies and procedures forlocating and claiming a lost dog or cat.
To report a lost or found pet, contact your local animal control officer. Also visit the Chester County SPCA website at www.ccspca.org