"I walked around our new building here at 4 Paws Lane in June 2012 the day before we moved our animals in. I walked through the kennels and cat rooms and told myself this was the last time I would ever hear these spaces silent but for my footsteps. I honestly never thought I would be in a silent building again; it is a surreal thing."
March 27th, 2020
Dear Cape Ann Animal Aid supporters,
I’m writing today to personally reach out to you to share Cape Ann Animal Aid’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Our animal shelter has never experienced a public health crisis of this nature, and we have proactively taken steps to mitigate the risk. As a result, we need your help.
Last week, in light of the worsening situation regarding COVID-19, we made the difficult decision to halt any incoming transports of animals from partner rescue organizations. In the interest of the safety of our staff and volunteers, we decided that the best course of action was to close the shelter to the public, thus ending all adoptions for the duration of this crisis, and placing our dogs and cats into foster homes. We started with 77 animals in our building and, thanks to our extremely hard working employees paired with a strong network of volunteers and supporters, we were able to place the majority of these pets into foster homes.
While our greatest hope is that we will be able to return to normal shelter operations soon, the reality is that we are looking at an extended need for social distancing and, as a result, an extended period of fostering. The decisions outlined above also allow us to be positioned to accept, as able, pets "orphaned" for a time within our own community due to their owners having to undergo in-patient medical treatment as a result of COVID-19.
Cape Ann Animal Aid is in unchartered financial territory. Today, I ask you, our most committed donors, to please consider supporting Cape Ann Animal Aid’s continued efforts to provide food, shelter, and medicine to homeless animals for the duration of this pandemic. You can make a donation online, or mail a check to us at 4 Paws Lane, Gloucester, MA 01930, or call us at (978) 283-6055 to make a donation by phone. (Please note that our staff hours are very limited so, if you call, please leave a message and we will get back to you.)
On behalf of Cape Ann Animal Aid’s board of directors, I hope that you and everyone in your family - including your pets - remain safe and healthy during this turbulent time.
Cape Ann Animal Aid
Keep up with us on our 4 Paws Blog and on social media to stay up to date on shelter operations during COVID-19, including stories from our foster families and how you can help shelter pets, and your own pets, during the crisis.
We are thrilled to share that Cape Ann Animal Aid has been awarded a $30,000 grant from the Petco Foundation to support our pre-adoption veterinary care program! The Petco Foundation’s investment will secure essential equipment and supplies needed to expand our current in-shelter veterinary practices for sheltered animals to include minor medical procedures and cat neuter surgeries.
Cape Ann Animal Aid has remained dedicated to curbing pet overpopulation issues over the years, making it a priority to spay and neuter animals prior to their adoption rather than relying on post-adoption voucher systems. In addition, we secure specialized vet care for animals needing more than routine care in preparation for adoption. For nearly twenty years, these surgeries and other procedures have been done in partnership with local veterinary clinics, most prominently with Cape Ann Veterinary Hospital and North Shore Veterinary Hospital, both of Gloucester.
We are so grateful for the relationship we have with these local vets. They’ve provided excellent services, and at a generous discount, for our shelter animals. But, our adoption numbers are growing and we’re running into delays due to space and scheduling issues. The next logical step is to begin performing many of these procedures in-house,” said Sunniva Buck, Executive Director.
Adopters travel from all over New England to adopt dogs or cats from Cape Ann Animal Aid and we have a strong presence in the local community, hosting school groups and leaning on a legion of nearly 200 volunteers each month. While local rescues are our priority, many of the animals are rescued and transported to Cape Ann Animal Aid from areas battling high-euthanasia and neglect rates such as Texas, Georgia, and Puerto Rico.
We have seen impressive growth over the years. In 2010, we placed 769 animals into loving homes. That number has nearly doubled, with 1,535 animals saved and placed into loving homes in 2018. In 2012, our organization moved into a newly constructed shelter in West Gloucester and interest in animal adoption continues to increase.
Adoption is becoming more and more popular in our area and we want to be able to keep up with that momentum so we can save more animals and make more adoption connections,” said Buck. “The investment from the Petco Foundation will help to move animals from the arrival to available stage more quickly. We’ll be able to take in more animals and save more lives as a direct result.”
In the future, we aim to move a majority of veterinary care for sheltered animals to an internal clinic under the leadership of our Director of Shelter Medicine, Dr. Alex Becket.
“Thanks to the Petco Foundation’s investment, the first step of that dream is becoming a reality,” said Buck. “We estimates that cat neuters will begin happening in the shelter later this year. It’s the start of a very exciting time for our shelter and the animals we care for.”
Representatives from the Petco Foundation will present Cape Ann Animal Aid with the grant check at 11 a.m. on Sunday, June 23 at the Petco located at Gloucester Crossing in Gloucester MA (341 Gloucester Crossing Road). Members of the community are invited to attend.
For more information about Cape Ann Animal Aid, visit www.capeannanimalaid.org. For more on the Petco Foundation, visit www.petcofoundation.org and join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram by using the hashtag #PetcoFamily.
By creating a trust for your pet, you can fund his or her personal and medical care; take the financial burden off your pet’s caretaker and choose several persons who will care for your best friend if you or your first choice of caretaker is no longer able." --Warshaw, DiCarlo & Associates
On November 3rd, we held a Pet Trust Luncheon for members of our community. The event was generously sponsored by Cape Ann Savings Bank Trust and Financial Services and Warshaw, Di Carlo & Associates. The function room of the Gloucester House was filled with pet owners, eager to learn how to protect their pets in the event that they pass away or are otherwise unable to care for them. For those that were unable to attend, we hope this recap and linked resources are helpful to you as you make important decisions and plans for the future.
Unfortunately, most people do not make arrangements for their pets in their estate plan and as a result, Cape Ann Animal Aid is often asked to assume responsibility for pets when the owners of these animals are no longer capable of providing care. In fact, in 2017 alone, we took in 22 animals due to either declining health or death of the owner.
Attorneys George Warshaw and Noel DiCarlo of Warshaw, DiCarlo and Associates presented the case for considering the many legal mechanisms that can be used to ensure that your pet has both a caretaker and the funds available for their care.
They outlined important steps in preparing for your pet's care in the future and answered questions from attendees. One of the first steps is to name a caretaker and to make sure they are willing and able to take on your pet’s care. Relying on family and friends without making sure they have the ability and desire to care for your pets is not enough. They also encouraged you to name additional willing caretakers as back-ups should complications arise.
Next, it is important to provide sufficient funds to care for your pet during their lifetime. In Massachusetts, all of this can be done through a pet trust. George and Noel both emphasized that once the pet trust is set up, it should be revisited periodically to make sure it does not need to be updated.
The key take away from the event was that making sure your beloved pets will be taken care of when you can no longer take care of them yourself is important and the time to start the process is now.
For more information about setting up a pet trust, speak with your lawyer, or contact Warshaw, Dicarlo and Associates. Financial planning assistance is also available through local banks such as Cape Ann Financial and Trust Services, the generous presenting sponsor of the luncheon.
Resources and Links:
Pet Trust Information
(Warshaw, DiCarlo and Associates)
Travel/Home Away Pet Care Instructions
(Warshaw, DiCarlo and Associates)
Cape Ann Trust and Financial Services
Sandy Mitchell Circle of Friends Bequest Society
(Cape Ann Animal Aid)
If you missed the Pet Trust Luncheon, and are interested in attending a similar event in 2019, please email firstname.lastname@example.org to be notified of possible upcoming events.
Thank you for the incredible show of support for Florian. His spirits (and ours) were uplifted by your love. As we stated in the original post, we have been working closely with the local Animal Control and law enforcement officials on this case. As such, we are not able to disclose very many details. However, we wanted to keep you updated to the best of our ability.
We can confirm that Florian is no longer in our care. A relative of the perpetrator contacted Animal Control and took custody of him. They were unaware that he was going to be abandoned and were extremely grateful for his safe capture and the care he received at Cape Ann Animal Aid. Florian was familiar with this individual and we believe that he is going to be happy and safe in this person’s care.
We will continue to work with local officials regarding charges that may be brought against the individual that made the careless and inhumane decision to abandon Florian. We made a decision to share this story publicly to spread awareness and promote healthy conversations about pet surrender. We thank you again for your suggestions, words of support, and continued friendship.
Cape ann animal aid
An opportunity for you to learn more about the mission and programs of Cape Ann Animal Aid. Sharing candid insights, guest columns, breaking news, and of course, adorable photos of shelter animals.