The following are some of the recent cases investigated by the Pennsylvania SPCA. Headquartered at 350 E. Erie Avenue in Philadelphia, the PSPCA operates one branch shelter in Danville but its humane officers investigate cruelty elsewhere in the state. For more information, call 215-426-6300 or visit To report animal cruelty call 1-866-601-SPCA.

100 block of Franklin Manor Lane in State College, PA Nov. 1, 2011. A Pennsylvania SPCA humane law enforcement officer responded to a report of a dog in distress in the backyard of a home. There was no owner present and an approximately a year- old female pit bull mix was lying on the ground unresponsive. Because of the dog's dire condition, the dog was taken to the nearest vet hospital where it was pronounced dead on arrival. The officer transported the dog to Williamsport, PA, where the dog was to undergo a necropsy to determine the cause of death. When the officer went to remove the dog's body from the crate, he observed that it was breathing. He immediately took the dog to Loyalsock Animal Hospital. Again, upon unloading it appeared to be deceased. The veterinary staff examined the dog closer and found that it had a heart rate of 7 beats per minute. Immediate interventions including blood transfusions, IV fluids and warming were provided. By the next day, the dog was up and walking. While the dog, which was renamed 'Stella,' was extremely malnourished and sick, the staff was cautiously optimistic it would make a full recovery. The next day the officer returned with a search warrant and removed Stella's sister, named Cuddles, who was also thin and in poor condition. The owner surrendered both animals to the PSPCA. Pending the results of medical tests, cruelty charges are pending. On, Nov. 29, having made a full recovery, Stella was adopted. Her sister, Cuddles, was adopted out through the Centre Hall Shelter on a few weeks earlier. (The dramatic photos above Stella's near-death condition when she was picked up and her amazing recovery five weeks later.)

Limekiln Pike, 6200 block, Philadelphia, Nov. 2.  Responding to complaints of animal abandonment, PSPCA officers obtained and executed a search warrant. The residents of the home had moved and left behind two animals. Upon entry through an unlocked basement door, officers discovered a medium-sized black pit bull type dog confined to the basement area. There was a large amount of accumulated feces, and no food or water. The dog was in poor physical condition and appeared emaciated. In addition to the dog, officers also removed a small tiger-striped cat from the kitchen. The animals were taken to the PSPCA and received medical care. Certified letters were sent to the alleged owners, and both pets remain under protective custody at the PSPCA. Follow-up and charges are pending.

N. 13th St., 3100 block, Nov. 21. Responding to a complaint of foul odor, PSPCA officers visited a home and observed over 10 domestic short hair type cats, most of the sick or injured. One cat with severely infected ingrown nails was removed and immediately brought to the shelter for medical attention. The owner agreed to surrender the rest of the cats. Officers returned on Nov. 26 and removed 19 cats without incident. Several traps were set and will be monitored. The cats were transported to the PSPCA where they received veterinary care. Once healthy, all of the cats will be available for adoption. No charges are pending at this time.

D St., 3400 block, Nov. 22. Responding to a complaint, PSPCA officers removed 7 cats and two dogs from a home. The property was filled with debris and animal waste and was infested with fleas. All of the cats were in poor condition, several with large wounds. The dogs, a Jack Russell mix and collie mix, were suffering from severe fleas bites and had hair loss. All of the animals were surrendered to the PSPCA were they are receiving veterinary care. Once they are healthy, all of the animals will be placed for adoption. The owners, a married couple, were charged with seven counts of animal cruelty.

East Clearfield St., 2300 block, Nov. 30. After issuing multiple warnings to provide food, water, and shelter, PSPCA officers executed a search warrant at a home where they observed a small black and white mixed breed dog in the backyard. The yard was covered in trash and feces, and no shelter, food, or water was available to the dog. The home owner was initially uncooperative and refused entry, but after the arrival of additional officers, the woman allowed officers to enter. Inside the home, bags of unknown narcotic substances were visible and Philadelphia Police were alerted. The dog was brought to the PSPCA after the resident agreed to relinquish ownership of the dog. Charges are pending.

E. Cornwall St., 1800 block, Dec. 8.  Responding to a complaint, PSPCA officers arrived at a home and noted a strong foul odor and saw a small black-and-white pit bull type dog in a feces and trash-filled back yard. A notice was left on the front door as no one was home. Officers returned to the property the following day and this time observed a black trash bag containing what appeared to be animal remains. A warrant was obtained to search the property. Upon entry, officers discovered a total of four turtles, one lizard and one fish in addition to the pit bull type dog. Two trash bags were found to contain the remains of three adult dogs, two puppies, and old bones. All 12 animals were removed from the feces and trash strewn property. The pit bull mix was brought to the PSPCA where she received medical care. Male and female offenders were charged with numerous counts of cruelty to animals.


Comly and Dutton Rds. Dec. 15. The decapitated remains of goats, chickens and ducks were found in a lot in Northeast Philadelphia and authorities are working to determine who dumped the carcasses. The animals were in a pile of garbage that was left scattered on a grassy area on the side of the road. PSPCA officials said the animals may have been slaughtered as part of a religious sacrifice, which is legal in some cases if done humanely. Dumping the remains, however is not legal. Police found several candles and other materials at the scene. It is not clear how many animals were found on the lot. The case is under investigation.