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Winchester Area SPCA: Bar Dog Operation Grant Report

How did this grant help your organization and the pets in your care?

Each year, the Winchester Area SPCA provides animal sheltering services to approximately 600 homeless dogs. Each of these dogs arrives with an array of medical and behavioral conditions. During the intake exam, dogs are monitored for body weight, skin condition, eye, ear, and mouth health, and for parasites.

One of the first lines of defense in getting a homeless dog healthy is flea treatment. In addition to being uncomfortable and itchy, fleas and ticks are dangerous to dogs and can cause a variety of medical conditions. Fleas devour up to 15 times their weight in blood every day. For a large animal with only several fleas, this is pretty inconsequential. But hundreds of fleas on a small dog or puppy could be fatal due to blood loss or related anemia alone.

Pets can develop allergies to flea bites. Such allergic reactions are extremely uncomfortable. If a dog is hosting hundreds of hungry fleas when an allergy surfaces, the discomfort could drive your poor buddy to scratch the bites raw, opening them up to potential infection.

In addition, fleas can carry parasites—most commonly tapeworms. When your pet ingests fleas while grooming, the tapeworms get released into your pet’s intestines, creating even more issues.

Fleas are also notorious for transmitting disease. Among the human diseases carried by fleas are bubonic plague and murine typhus.

Funding from the Bar Dog Operation Grant allowed us to purchase 80 doses of flea and tick treatment. These dogs are now itch-free; they have regained their appetites and feel like playing again. Parasite treatment is vital for a healthy overall animal-sheltering environment, and the Bar Dog Operation Grant helped to make that possible.

How many pets did this grant help?


Please provide a story of one or more specific pets this grant helped.

Guapo was one of the dogs who received a dose of flea and tick treatment thanks to the Petfinder Foundation and the Bar Dog Operation Grant.

Once vetted, he was quickly adopted. This is a note from his new family: “We adopted Bear (formally Guapo) and he very quickly became an important member of our family. He was skinny and scared when we first met him and it took an hour or so for him to even warm up to us at the shelter.

“As soon as we took him home, he fell into our laps. He’s got his quirks, but he is the sweetest Bear we’ve ever met. He’s best friends with bunnies, cows, and people now!”

Thank you, Petfinder Foundation and Bar Dog!

Further Reading