Over 115 years of protecting animals
The mission of the SPCA of Tompkins County is to protect companion animals. We are a no-kill shelter dedicated to preventing animal cruelty and overpopulation. We promote responsible pet stewardship by providing education, counseling and training to nurture and enhance the human-animal bond.
The SPCA of Tompkins County, located in Ithaca NY, was incorporated in 1902 in an effort to end cruelty and provide safe shelter to the unwanted, abandoned, and homeless animals of Tompkins County.
In 1999, after reducing its euthanasia rate by over 50% in a single year, the SPCA Board of Directors resolved to transition to the nation’s first open admission no-kill shelter over a two-year period. The SPCA made an important first step toward realizing its “no kill” vision by finishing 2001 with a save rate of 100% of healthy dogs and cats for the first time in its 100 year history. In 2002, the SPCA went on to save 100% of healthy and treatable dogs and cats, becoming the first county in the nation to do so, and maintained that during 2003. At that time, Animal People, a national journal, ranked Tompkins County as the safest community for pets in the United States with a euthanasia rate of 1.8 animals for every 1,000 human residents, over eight times lower than the national average and the lowest of any community in the nation.
In the spring of 2004, the SPCA opened the Dorothy & Roy Park Pet Adoption Center, a state of the art sheltering facility that provides dogs and cats with comfortable home-like settings, access to natural light, and health-promoting independent air systems. Situated on 12 acres, the Adoption Center also has a surgery suite, offices and conference room, and an array of training and play spaces. Registered as the nation’s first LEED Certified “green” animal shelter by the U.S. Green Building Council for its environmental emphasis, earth-friendly adaptations, and sustainable design, the facility is “good for people, good for animals, and good for the planet.” In 2014, in honor of the 10-year anniversary of the Park Adoption Center, a large roof mounted solar array was added (the Swanson Array) to continue this commitment to environmentally friendly and sustainable animal sheltering.
Today, The SPCA receives and investigates nearly 1500 calls of suspected abuse or neglect every year, as well as provides animal control services (dog control) to 7 of our 10 local municipalities.
We are the only low cost spay and neuter provider locally and each year perform nearly 2000 S/N surgeries for low income members of our community and up to 11 neighboring counties, who without our help would struggle to afford this critical step in reducing the unwanted pet population.
Every year the SPCA participates in countless humane education events with local Girl Scout troupes, area schools, and local libraries. Each summer Over 150 children aged 9-12 attend our wildly popular SPCA Summer camp. Students learn about humane and appropriate care of companion animals, wildlife and participate in a hoist of offsite field trips.
Currently, the SPCA takes in close to 2000 animals each year who find happy new homes here in our community. The SPCA staff, along with over 250 annual volunteers, rehabilitate, train, and care for these animals keeping them safe, happy, and socialized until they find their new forever homes.
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