Perhaps the coronavirus crisis, which has kept people closer to home, has helped with adoptions, but even though the SPCA had to close its doors to visitors for several months, record numbers of adoptions have occurred.

Cats and kittens are flying out the door, and there was even a period when dogs were in short supply, not only in Olean, but across the country. Many people are finding solace and companionship during this period by adding a nonjudgmental, loving member to their households.

And people have been generous with donations to help cover the medical costs for the animals in need, the biggest SPCA expense.Thanks go out to all.

SEEKING A HOME: Crutch, a very sweet cat, was found this summer in Olean, struggling to walk, and was brought to the SPCA. She had a broken leg that had healed improperly, making walking painful and labored.

After two veterinarian opinions, they finally had to operate and amputate the rear leg, and she has now recovered and feels great. Kind donors provided the funds to pay for her medical care, and she is ready for her own caring home — and a new name.

She’s spayed, has all her shots and wants a home with someone she can share her sweet and playful personality with. She loves people, but not other animals. She’s feeling somewhat isolated now as she’s kept separate from the others and depends on visits from staff and volunteers.

Do a good deed for her and yourself, come to the SPCA and meet Crutch. Perhaps you’ll want to take her home.

SPCA CHRISTMAS STORE: Devoted volunteers have once again created an outstanding store at the Olean Center Mall offering a great selection of holiday gifts that are lovely, useful and affordable. Stop by and support the animals as you make selections for family and friends.

Many come to the Mall just to shop in this store. Chief organizer Lila Ervay reports: “We offer a beautiful oak wooden rocker for a small adult or child, a lovely large white wooden rocker, an antique wooden upholstered piano bench, many pictures, a brand new sage green ceramic table with four lantern holders, ideal for an outdoor patio, small appliances, hand sewn purses, lots of jewelry, draperies, baby afghans, Christmas sweaters, ladies’ scarves, a wonderful oven set with all kinds of pots and pans for a special little girl, beautiful glassware, a Snow Village with many accessories and lots of things for pets, many handcrafted.”

The SPCA store will be open every Thursday, Friday and Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., until Christmas Eve. There are also some great store items online at

PET CARE INFO ON INTERNET: Ronnie Schenkein, an SPCA board member and retired veterinarian, offers some advice on how to sort out sound information from wild ideas and advertising hype.

• Do not take advice from a site that sells a product. Even with glowing testimonials there may be a great deal they are not telling you.

• Look for sites of established organizations, such as universities, veterinary colleges and professional organizations.

• Just because someone presents themselves as an animal expert in magazine articles or videos does not mean they are correct. Some behavior modification methods that appear to get results can create an anxious, fearful animal.

The Veterinary Information Network’s site — — has a wealth of information written by experts, is free to clients and is used by vets in their work.

SPCA CAN USE YOUR VOTE: Siemen’s Positive Energy Community Campaign is offering a contest for non-profits with rewards up to $10,000. You can vote once a day. Go to the website and scroll down to the SPCA logo:

This continues until Dec. 11. Your vote can make a difference.

GIVING TUESDAY: Don’t forget the SPCA on this special day that makes a huge difference to local non-profits.

CORNELL FELINE HEALTH CENTER: or “Supporting Cat Health with Information and Health Studies”. These are the ultimate experts in New York state and they handle difficult cases that need special expertise. Zeppo, one of the SPCA cats in need of ear surgery, was operated on there recently, and is happily recovering at the home of a devoted SPCA volunteer.

Their newsletters are filled with useful information. Their annual report tells of their Camuti Consultation Line, named after a legendary vet, and gives advice and reassurance about the care of your cat, lets you talk to experts about your cat’s diagnosis and prognosis; allows you to work directly with Cornell’s expert vets and specialists; receive specialized consultations in oncology, cardiology, behavior therapy. Members of the Cornell Feline Center receive a 20% discount on general consultations. During the pandemic they are accepting consults via email:

DONATE FOR SPCA ANIMALS VIA YOUR RETURNABLE BOTTLES: Many people take their returnables to Allegany Beverage and request that the money returned to them be given to the SPCA. It’s surprising how much money this can generate, so please consider that when you redeem. And you can designate the SPCA in Cattaragus County as the recipient of dollar benefits from anything you purchase via Amazon Smile. Easy to sign up, and it adds up.

CATS ARE WATCHING TV: Kind donors gave a television and video to the Mahar Cat Room at the shelter. Now, instead of seeing the cats lounging around and watching each other, when you visit at least eight to 10 cats are watching the programs created especially for their pleasure and entertainment. Now they hope to get a second such donation for another of the big cat rooms.

SPCA ANNUAL NEWSLETTER: It was mailed out recently to everyone on the mailing list. If you haven’t received one, please notify the front desk and ask to be added to the list: Special thanks go out once again to Lynda Dunn of Citizen Printing in Allegany. She’s fast, efficient, creative, a pleasure to work with and produces a wonderful result.

SPCA In Cattaraugus County is at 2944 Route 16, Olean, NY 14760 (716) 372-8492. Open Tuesday to Saturday, noon to 5 p.m. and Sunday 1 to 4 p.m. Closed Mondays; or check out to see animals for adoption.

Trending Food Videos