pets' lives saved since becoming no-kill in
January 2002

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Richmond SPCA

Humane Center

2519 Hermitage Road
Richmond, VA 23220

Adoption Hours
Mon. 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Tue. - Fri. 12 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Sat. 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Sun. 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.
Lora Robins Gift Shop Hours
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Tue. - Fri. 12 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Sat. 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Sun. 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Donation Drop Off Hours
Mon. 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Tue. - Fri. 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Sat. 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Sun. 12 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Susan M. Markel
Veterinary Hospital

Mon. - Fri. 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Admissions Hours
Mon. - Fri. by appointment.

Administrative Hours
Mon. - Fri. 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
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CEO purrspective

December 2007

Dear Fellow Animal Lover:

As the end of 2007 fast approaches and the holiday season gets rolling, I am profoundly aware of what a truly remarkable year this has been for our cause to save and protect homeless animals. In many ways, 2007 has been the year when the animal welfare field came of age. 

The Michael Vick dog fighting case educated the public about the horrors of dog fighting and showed them that it is organized crime of the worst sort.  The vast majority of people in this country made it more than clear that they are appalled by the abuses of dog fighting and want to see stiff sentences and tougher laws.  The public was incensed that humans would treat animals in such a barbaric fashion.  The Richmond Times-Dispatch asked me to write a series of columns analyzing the Vick case from the animal welfare perspective.  For a humane professional to be given such a forum was nothing short of remarkable and indicative of the public’s heightened interest in our work and mission.

Last month, we helped the Humane Society of the United States break up a puppy mill in southwest Virginia.  The outpouring of support and gratitude for our efforts and of heart felt concern about the well being of the animals that was expressed by our community was truly extraordinary.  More than 300 people put their names on a list wanting to provide one of the dogs with a good home and hundreds more have asked how they could help in putting an end to the unconscionable abuse of dogs in puppy mills.

Most recently, the body of a dog was found on a rock in the James River in such condition as to make clear that the poor, innocent animal had been grotesquely tortured.  The Richmond SPCA joined with HSUS to offer a reward for information to help nail the monster who did this and City Councilman Chris Hilbert and his wife Sheila Mandt generously added their own amount to the reward.  Again, this gruesome matter caused massive expressions of horror and concern for abused animals, not to mention desire to see the perpetrator(s) brought to justice. 

Could you interpret the events of 2007 as illustrating the savage cruelty and utter selfishness of man?  Yes, you could, but I think the more appropriate focus is on the vast numbers of people who have shown that they care deeply about animals and will no longer sit back quietly while they are abused.  I believe that we should see in all of this a wonderful commentary that our society has advanced further on the continuum of compassion so that most people are now unwilling to tolerate the abusive treatment of the most defenseless among us our animal companions.

I ask for your continued support as we work to provide a greater safety net of protection around the noble animals who depend on us.  As I reflect on 2007, what stands out in my memory is not Vick or the puppy millers.  It is Lila, one of the puppy mill dogs we rescued, who, despite all she had suffered, licked my hand and face repeatedly as I carried her into our humane center from the van that brought her to us.  Lila’s unconditional love is all the inspiration I need to carry on the effort to protect them.

Robin Robertson Starr

  • Click here to learn more about Robin and the Richmond SPCA's executive management team.
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