Human Service Programs for Pet Owners
We know you want to give your pets the best life they deserve, and we're here to help you do that. The York County SPCA offers pet owners resources that help families care for their pets. Whether you are experiencing financial hardship, met with an unexpected crisis, or simply need assistance, we invite you to explore our programs.
Pet Food Pantry
The Pet Food Pantry provides free pet food to community members who are unable to afford it, such as fixed- or low-income individuals and those enduring financial hardship. With the surplus of pet food donations we receive, we give back to the community through this program. To receive assistance through the Pet Food Pantry, please call the York County SPCA at 717-764-6109 and, when you request pet food, specify the type, size, and age of the animal. One of our staff members will then prepare your one-month supply of pet food, which can be picked up at the YCSPCA.
The Pet Food Pantry runs on a first-come-first-served basis.
The York County SPCA’s SafePet program provides temporary in-shelter boarding for pets whose owners have fled a domestic violence situation, plan to leave a domestic violence situation, have been displaced from their home due to a natural disaster, or are homeless. Priority pet housing is given to individuals referred to our SafePet program by a United Way Partner Agency or YCSPCA agreed partner. This includes Safe Home YWCA, YWCA York, Bell Family Shelter, YMCA Men’s Emergency Shelter, LifePath, and the American Red Cross.
To inquire about the Safe Pet program, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The York County SPCA encourages pet owners to have their pets microchipped. This provides a permanent form of identification for your pet in the event that they become lost and lose their collar or tags. A microchip (the size of a grain of rice) is implanted under the skin below the back of your pet’s neck. The implantation is painless and performed in just seconds. A scanner is then used to scan the animal and pick up the microchip that traces back to the owner.
Microchipping is now recognized in Pennsylvania as a valid identification for a lifetime license, which means microchipped dogs can be registered for a lifetime license, eliminating the need for an annual county license. At this time, microchipping is only offered through our spay/neuter clinic at the time of surgery.
Lost and Found
If you have lost or found a pet, please submit a Lost or Found Report. We cross reference all incoming animals with these reports and a partnering database that uses facial recognition technology to help identify owned animals. While filling out the form, please be sure to upload a photo of the animal and provide as many details as possible.
Cat Colony Aid
The Cat Colony Aid program aims to help individuals care for community cats by relieving some of the financial burden involved in colony management. Cat Colony Aid is stocked by donated bags of previously opened cat food and coupons for cat food. If you are caring for one or more cat colonies, you can call the York County SPCA and request aid. Since this program runs on a first-come-first-served basis, that individual may receive cat food, coupons, or both to be picked up at the YCSPCA.
Pet Food Distribution
The York County SPCA delivers pet food to senior centers and the York County Food Bank to help community members who are unable to afford pet food and lack mobility or do not have transportation access to the shelter, such as senior citizens. The Pet Food Distribution program is stocked by a surplus of donated pet food that we are able to give back to the community. Volunteers deliver pet food to senior centers and the York County Food Bank once a month.
What is the York County SPCA's CARMA Program?
The CARMA program (Companion Animals Requiring Medical Assistance) at the York County SPCA was established to help members of our community facing financial hardships or constraints that have encountered an urgent medical situation with their pet. The goal of this program is to prevent unnecessary surrenders to the shelter or euthanasia due to the financial impact of paying for the service through a veterinarian. Our CARMA program is NOT free of charge.
Thanks to the generosity of our community, the price for these services is greatly reduced. Cost estimates are provided prior to scheduling. Please, be prepared to pay the entire bill at the time of service. For surgeries, you will be required to put a 50% deposit down at the time of drop off and pay the remaining balance at the time of pick up. Currently, we are unable to provide payment plans or accept Care Credit.
We do not have a separate wellness clinic for owned animals so all CARMA patients are seen by our shelter medical team. The care of our in-house shelter animals will always come first. Therefore, if we are overwhelmed by the needs of our shelter animals, we may not be able to provide care to as many CARMA patients. We prioritize CARMA patients based on urgency and severity of the animal’s needs. The best way to provide a complete picture of what your pet is facing is by sending a detailed email to email@example.com with the subject “CARMA Inquiry.” Please include all veterinary records as attachments to that email. Note: In times of exceedingly high demand, priority will be given to York County residents. Please allow up to a week for a response.
Conditions/ Issues We Cannot Address Through CARMA
Below is a list of conditions which we cannot help through the CARMA program:
- Chronic conditions requiring rechecks/follow ups, including but not limited to: diabetes, kidney disease, liver disease, thyroid conditions, Cushing’s disease, Addison’s disease, heart failure, seizures, etc.
- Routine vaccinations
- ACL, meniscal tears, or luxating patella repairs
- Orthopedic fractures where pins and plates are wanted (we can perform amputations if the owner agrees)
- Complicated surgeries requiring specialized training or equipment
- Head trauma
- Unstable animals requiring intensive 24-hour monitoring, such as hit by car
- Animals in need of oxygen support or trouble breathing
- Requests for euthanasia
- Poison or toxin ingestion
- Birds, reptiles, and small animals (such as rabbits, guinea pigs, ferrets, hamsters, rats, etc.)
- Heartworm disease
Other Community Resources
If you are having financial difficulties and your pet is experiencing a non-emergent issue please consider visiting the low-cost PetVet Wellness Center inside of Tractor Supply. Click here for more information.