With the forecast calling for snow, sleet, freezing rain Sunday into Monday, people across the Hudson Valley did what they needed to be prepared for the storm.  Grocery shopping, ensuring the shovels and ice melt were ready to go, the usual.
But what about the animals of the Hudson Valley, specifically those animals living in shelters, what happens to them during a storm if the staff or volunteers are unable to get there to care for them?
We caught up with the Dutchess County SPCA staff to hear about what their staff did to care for the 110 animals on-site that are spread across two buildings at the shelter.
DCSPCA
DCSPCA
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Penny Schouten, Marketing/Communications/Community Resource Director for the Dutchess County SPCA shared that when there is a risk that the roads will be impassable and the staff won't be able to get to the building, a sleepover may be necessary.
The regular care routine must be maintained, so this (staying over) is a necessity sometimes.  We try to make sure that they have plenty of (human) snacks and they usually decide to watch a movie (although this time I think they might have been also playing video games).
Six staff members in total spent the night at the shelter on Violet Avenue in Hyde Park Sunday night into Monday, and believe it or not, by choice, they sleep on dog beds, swearing they are really comfortable, air mattresses, or the couches in the lobby.  The staff shared with us that they usually split up and sleep in the meet and greet rooms or the community cat rooms.
DCSPCA
DCSPCA
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As a matter of safety, animals can't be roaming around the shelter lobby, so each person or group of staff will pick a pet they want to cuddle with and stay over in one of the rooms with one pet.
Now typically, the animals are used to the shelter being quiet after 6pm, they really love the extra attention from these caregivers that they know and love.  You have to think, if they were living in a home with a family, they'd be able to cuddle up with their humans, sleep in the bed or on the couch or in a bedroom.  These sleepovers give the animals an opportunity to get a little extra loving, and extra love is always the best option.
DCSPCA
DCSPCA
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You can tell that Shelby, pictured below, was especially happy with the sleepover.  A very loving and cuddly dog, she is happiest, obviously, with her humans and cuddled with everyone.

DCSPCA
DCSPCA
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Even if adopting a new furry family member isn't in the cards at this time, you can always donate to the DCSPCA through their wishlist, here.  At this time, they are struggling to get their 'house food' which can be found on the wishlist.  They are also in need of blanket, comforter and towel donations as well.
Our thanks to the incredible staff at the Dutchess County SPCA, especially Lauryn, Sammie, Yurina, Nick, Emily B & Emily G.
DCSPCA
DCSPCA
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