Dear Friends,

As you read this, know that you are among a special group of people who are aware of the bond between humans and animals, people that live that bond through their actions, their philosophies and their empathy.

As 2014 draws to a close, we want to take this moment to thank those that have contributed to the rescue and re-homing of nearly 800 animals year to date, be they staff, Board, volunteers, or donors.

Their help allows us to accomplish rescue on a large scale, covering a territory roughly the size of Rhode Island. Within that territory sits out shelter, the nexus of an operation that offers housing and adoption of virtually every domestic species we stumble across, an operation that runs a low cost spay/ neuter clinic, an operation that fields the county’s ONLY dedicated animal cruelty investigations division.

Our adoption center took in nearly 400 cats, 300 dogs and 125 farm animals. Of those more than 300 cats, 200 dogs and 100 farm animals were successfully placed. The rest wait their inevitable forever homes.

Our low cost clinic performed nearly 3000 surgeries year to date, bringing vital spay/ neuter services to the county’s disadvantaged pets.

Our Humane Law Division responded to over 125 cruelty complaints. Sometimes these cases are not serious; a dog left to bark outside for hours, or stray cats collecting in an abandoned building…but other times we knock on a door expecting a mundane call, only to find dozens of underfed, underappreciated and generally discarded cats, dogs or farm animals.

Every call and corresponding animal deserves our attention. Our commitment to animal welfare means we leave no stone unturned, no animal unchecked. It also means we are left with a hefty price tag to ensure animal safety.

Despite being the only animal welfare agency in the county, we receive no local, state or federal funding. Despite sharing the title, we are not affiliated with the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, or the ASPCA.

That last point comes as a surprise to most people. A donation made to the national chapter of the ASPCA does not trickle down to the Ulster County SPCA. While we share a common fight to eradicate animal cruelty, we do not share a budget. Our doors stay open through the generosity and compassion of our donors.

Long ago, Mahatma Gandhi said, “The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” We take great pride in our shelter and the manner in which we treat the animals, a level of care that is made possible with the daily support given by the citizens of Ulster County and beyond. Thanks to all of you, there will be many ‘Happy Tales’ this Holiday season.

The Board of Directors, along with the Executive Director Adam Saunders, and all of our staff, wish each and every one of you a wonderful Holiday Season and a very Happy New Year.

                                                                                                                   Thank you,

                                                                                                                   Cindy Caporale, President of the Board

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