A Christmas Miracle at the Adams County SPCA

When the Adams County Society of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ACSPCA) staff and volunteers found their dog kennels empty over the Christmas holiday, they explained it as a “Christmas miracle.”

SPCA Directory Abby Avery said she worked relentlessly with volunteers and staff to empty the almost-full kennels over a two-week period in December. “We came to work early and stayed late,” she said.


After posting the news on the association’s Facebook page, Avery said she watched as the story went viral. The SPCA’s work gained national attention, airing on Fox 43 TV, Good Morning America, People Magazine, USA Today, and The Washington Post.

“It’s the first time in the 47-year history of the SPCA that the dog kennels are empty,“ said Avery. “The planets simply aligned. We were able to adopt out animals that the police and others dropped off.”

Avery said the shelter can house up to 50 dogs and 100 cats on the property that includes 10 fenced acres and a barn for horses.

Avery said the shelter’s shelves are stocked with supplies generously donated at Christmastime, but that although the shelter is now empty it is receiving many calls for owner surrenders.

Avery said that the staff prides itself on assisting the local community and if the shelter is not filled with local animals soon they plan to reach out to nearby overburdened shelters nearby in PA.

The ACSPCA website posts photos and histories of each animal to be adopted, along with stories shared from the point of view of the animals. The site relays compelling information that encourages people to adopt the animals.

The SPCA has a wish list of needed supplies on their website.

The SPCA, located at 11 Goldenville Road, Gettysburg, is open Monday through Saturday by appointment for adoptions. Applications are online. Please call 717-334-8876 for more information.

Take a virtual tour here: https://www.adamscountyspca.org.

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Amy is a freelance writer and reporter. She, her husband, and her two children reside in Adams County. She works in early childhood education and occupational therapy, and volunteers with local organizations.

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Fran K. Ingram
Fran K. Ingram
3 months ago

Local SPCA will be busy after the holidays when the gift of pets brings reality to many. Pets should never be considered gifts. They come with responsibilities such as training, need food, and love. The gift should never end up as a cast away toy.

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