Archives for March 2012

In Memory of Ruth Robinson ~

It’s so very heartwarming to see the names of family and friends who thought so much of Mom to make a gift in her memory. And such a worthy cause! Knowing these gifts will have a direct impact on the lives of rescued pets – giving them a bit more food and comfort while they wait for their forever home – puts a warm smile in our hearts.
~With great appreciation,
~The family of Ruth Robinson


Domestic Longhair/Mix: An adoptable cat in State College, PA  [Read more…]

Shila & Aspen Update

Great news for Shila and Aspen, they are now in foster care.  They have over 20 acres of pastures to roam along with a pond.  After spending several months at PCF, they began to greet people by coming up to the gates and allowing people to pat them.  They have come along way!!!

Early in Feburary Pets Come First, The New SPCA!  received a call from PSPCA cruelty officer, Jack Ardrey, about 8 horses belonging to a “horse rescue”. The owner had been educated and warned about the care of his horses, but at the last visit Jack found 4 dead horses. PSPCA and several rescue groups came together to move the remaining horses. Two of the horses were blind mares in mud up to their bellies! PCF offered to take them in at their adoption centre as we have a barn and small paddock area and it was felt the mares would be more comfortable in a smaller place.  Aspen a 10 year old bay mare and Shila a 9 year old paint were delivered to the centre early in the evening.  Both had moon blindness, a chronic condition of the eyes. Aspen the alpha of the two has some sight, while Shila seems to be completely blind and depends on the other mare. Both have settled nicely in their new home and are available for adoption to experienced horse owners as companion horses.  Although blind horses can be trained and ridden, these two will take quite a bit of work.  As with many rescue horses, they have limited if any training.  Recently they were trimmed by farrier, James Heck, with limited success. The paint mare was fine, but the bay ended with only one foot done.  Trimming was stopped till volunteers and staff can work with the mare to have her more comfortable picking up her feet.  Both mares are in great shape weight wise and easy keepers.

January & February 2012

Since opening our doors on January 5, 2012 – February 29, 2012, in 32 days, we have adopted 76 animals to their new forever homes.  In January 25 dogs, 13, cats and 1 pig.  In February 15 dogs and 22 cats.

One cat clinic was held in February and 42 cats were spayed/neutered.

THANK YOU to all our volunteers and the community who have welcomed us with open arms.   Together we are making a difference for the animals that were left behind.

CDT – Grand Opening

Finding a family: Pets Come First holds grand opening, hopes to secure home for each animal

By Mike Dawson

POTTER TOWNSHIP — “Little Bear” is an 18-week-old purebred Rottweiler. He weighs about 40 pounds, and since last week, he’s been living at the Pets Come First adoption center in Potter Township and a foster home in Philipsburg.

But, Little Bear, or just Bear as his caretaker, Fred Grauch, calls him, has some special needs that call for an owner who can give him extra care: The dog is blind and partially deaf. The staff and volunteers at the Pets Come First adoption center hope to find Little Bear a permanent home, and on Sunday, the center hosted a grand opening to introduce itself to the public and show off the 51 animals that are up for adoption. The event drew dozens of guests, and volunteers had taken two applications for pet adoptions. The process, said volunteer Cheryl Sharer, of Milesburg, also requires two references and a vet check on any previous pets.

The adoption center doesn’t euthanize any animal but it does charge a surrender fee. There’s already a waiting list for surrenders, though, several pages long for cats and dogs.

In January, Pets Come First took over the site of the old Pennsylvania SPCA adoption center. After two years of success, the PSPCA will transfer ownership of the building to Pets Come First. Deb Warner, the president and a co-founder of Pets Come First, said the center hopes to raise $250,000 in each of those two years.  Warner said the center has had 60 adoptions since the soft opening at the start of the year. She said there’s been “a steady flow of volunteers” who have made everything come together.  “The response from everyone has just been fantastic,” Warner said.

Among the center’s services include spaying and neutering the animals that are surrendered and finding them homes. The center has an arrangement with Straley Veterinary Associates to offer low-cost spaying and neutering.  In the short term, Warner hopes to have a rabies clinic and organize a variety of events and fundraisers.   The next fundraiser will be an owner and pet run/walk called the Dog Jog at the Centre County Grange Fairgrounds on April 28.

Longer-term goals include hiring paid staff and a cruelty enforcement officer.  While it’s a Centre County facility, Warner said most of the animals come from Mifflin and Juniata counties. The people adopting the pets are primarily from there, too, she said, because there are no shelters in those counties.  Donations in the form of cash, food and cat litter are appreciated, Warner said. Monetary donations are spent on needs at the local adoption center and not sent elsewhere, she said.

William Harrison and Angela Rogers, two Penn State students, were among the grand opening guests on Sunday. They took some time to play with cats, and they said they’d like to volunteer with the organization. “I grew up with a dog, but cats are growing on me,” said Rogers, of Lancaster. As for Little Bear, the Rottweiler, he ended up at the adoption center after his owner last week took him to a vet in Centre Hall to see if the blindness and deafness could be treated.  Cortlyn Johnson, another Pets Come First volunteer, happened to be at the vet, too, getting a checkup for nine kittens she’d adopted.  “While I was waiting for them, he showed up,” Johnson said of Little Bear.  Johnson overheard Little Bear’s plight and offered him a temporary home. She arranged for Grauch, the husband of one of her cousins, to take care of the dog.  Pets Come First is open Thursdays through Sundays at 2451 General Potter Highway (U.S. Route 322) in Potter Township.

For more information, call the center at 814-364-1725 or visit
Mike Dawson can be reached at 814-231-4616


Tyson renamed Apache has settled in nicely in his new home.  He is absolutely in love with our other dog Phoenix.  They have been inseparable from day one. They love running around the yard playing and chasing each other. He is such a good boy and a huge snuggler. We bring him to the dog park and he gets along great with all the other dogs.  They all run and play with each other.  We absolutely love him


We adopted Cass the first week of January, when Pets Come First opened the adoption center.  She had a rough start in the beginning and was ill.  Cass recovered quickly and is doing well now.  She gets along great with our senior border collie


These are our girls Gretchen and Nanook…

Gretchen, the Shepherd is 3 months old.  We adopted her from Pets Come First for my son and the bond and love they have for one another is unbelievable.  When he leaves for work she misses him so much.  Nanook, a black Shepherd is our other puppy and both girls get along great!  I am so thankful and happy we adopted Gretchen. THANK YOU! She found her forever home!


The Fourth Annual Dog Jog is here!

Grab your sneakers and your furry friend and come out and enjoy a day with the dogs.  PCF is the proud organizer of this community event where family, friends, and colleges come together to raise money for the local animals in our area.   Help us make a difference in our community, one animal at a time!   [Read more…]