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What do I do with this animal I found?

February 20, 2018

One of the most common kind of questions on West Philadelphia-local mailing lists, forums and Facebook communities has to do with what to do about lost, stray or injured animals. Here are some official resources that can help if you find one of those animals and want to help:

If you find a lost or stray dog, cat, or other household pet, ACCT (Animal Care and Control Team) Philadelphia are the most likely to be able to take a found animal. You can visit http://www.acctphilly.org/foundpet/ for more information. Make sure to fill out the ACCT Found Pet Report: http://www.acctphilly.org/foundpet/foundreport/. If you can’t keep the animal until its family can be located, ACCT will accept it at their central location. They are not a no-kill shelter. 

Morris Animal Refuge is another animal shelter at which you can surrender found domestic animals. They are also not a no-kill shelter. http://www.morrisanimalrefuge.org

The Pennsylvania SPCA (or PSPCA) is a no-kill shelter, but they are very often full to capacity. You can try contacting them, but they may not have space to take the animal so it may be best to call ahead so you’re not turned away at the door: https://www.pspca.org/locations/headquarters

If you lose your dog, cat, or other household pet, make sure to check ACCT’s found animals page and fill out their lost pet report: http://www.acctphilly.org/lostpet/lostreport/

If you suspect animal cruelty, contact the Pennsylvania SPCA’s Humane Law Enforcement division at https://www.pspca.org/cruelty

If you want to report a loose dog, barking dogs, suspected animal  cruelty or other animal control issues, contact ACCT at http://www.acctphilly.org/programs/animal-ordinance-complaints/report-a-violation/

For general assistance with cats in West Philly, there are two local volunteer cat rescues that might be able to help you, but their resources are limited and their responses may not be immediate:

Project MEOW (Make Every One Wanted): https://www.projectmeow.org

City Kitties: http://www.citykitties.org/

For sick or injured deer, or other deer-related complaints in Philadelphia, contact the Pennsylvania Game Commission’s Southeast office: http://www.pgc.pa.gov/InformationResources/AboutUs/ContactInformation/Southeast/Pages/default.aspx

For sick or injured wildlife (birds, raccoons, possums, squirrels, foxes or anything else), you used to be able to take them to the Wildlife Clinic at the Schuykill Center in Roxborough. Unfortunately, due to some very messy drama (http://www.chestnuthilllocal.com/2018/02/14/fired-enviro-center-clinic-director-claims-retaliation), their clinic is closed to new animals right now. However, their website does list other places in the state that you can take an injured wild animal instead until they reopen: http://www.schuylkillcenter.org/departments/wildlife/.

Mike VanHelder

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