Advertisement. Advertise with us

Executive Director Stacie Haynes, left, and Board President Henry Gaylord Dillingham cut the ribbon at the new SPCA building. (Kevin Limiti/

Susquehanna SPCA
celebrates opening of new facility
with ribbon cutting, open house

By KEVIN LIMITI• Special to

OTSEGO Hundreds gathered outside the Susquehanna SPCA’s new facility in Cooperstown for a ribbon cutting ceremony Saturday, July 17, which they say would help better service the needs of animals who are homeless and in need of caring adoptees.

In spite of the humidity one young woman apparently fainted during remarks from State Sen. Peter Oberacker, R-Maryland the crowd was lively and enthusiastic, some bringing their own dogs to the ceremony.

Stacie Haynes, who as executive director has been at the forefront of this whole project, told the crowd this has been her “dream job” and joked she “hasn’t been home since.”

“I’m a dreamer and optimistic by nature,” Haynes said, but never imagined she’d be “standing on a multi-million dollar campus.”

Haynes thanked the “Shelter Us” capital campaign, which was largely responsible for raising the money necessary to build and open the facility, calling them an “all-star group.”

The Shelter Us Capital Campaign was able to secure a grant from the New York State Animal Capital Fund from the Department of Agriculture and Markets in order to move the facility to state Route 28 near Cooperstown.

Through fundraising, the SPCA was able to raise $5 million, with the new facility costing between $5.2 and $5.3 million.

Visitors tour the dog kennels at the new SPCA building in Cooperstown. (Kevin Limiti/

The reason for the high cost was the special needs of the building itself, which required things like HVAC, sound proofing, water proofing and other accommodations necessary for housing different sorts of animals.

“It’s not like building a regular building,” Henry Gaylord Dillingham, board president, told AllOtsego. “You have to keep animals from smelling each other because it creates stress.”

“We didn’t do anything gold-plated,” Dillingham said, but stressed the need for them to complete the project in the right way that best served the animals. “It’s just a very specialized problem.”

Some of the upgrades for the building included two separate entrances, one for visiting animals and one for animals leaving for new homes, a new sterile surgery room and updated air ventilation.

Prior to the ribbon cutting, Oberacker made some remarks as did Assemblyman Chris Tague, R-Schoharie, who said that he sprayed and neutered a colony of feral cats and has “always had animals.”

Visitor plays with one of the kittens in the new SPCA building. (Kevin Limiti/

“You folks have a wonderful young lady right here,” Tague said of Haynes. “This is a state-of-the-art facility. This is the model of what we need to do not only in New York State but also in the country.”

Assemblyman John Salka, R-Brookfield, also praised the SPCA and called the building “the most incredible project I’ve seen in a long time.”

“This is a great way to spend public and private money,” Salka said.

Commissioner for Agriculture and Markets Richard Ball expressed how important such projects were.

“This is an example of how things work better when we work together,” he said.

Haynes was surprised to tears when Dr. Julie Huntsman revealed a painting she made featuring Haynes and her deceased dog, Ellie, in the hallway of the new building. Ellie was a border collie mixed with golden retriever.

Dr. Julie Huntsman hugs Stacie Haynes in front of a picture that she painted of Haynes and her deceased dog, Ellie. (Kevin Limiti/

“To describe it in one way would be grateful,” Haynes told after the event. “The people that care, who donate, made this possible.”

The new facility had an open house between the times of 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Related Articles

Sponsors, Donors Sought in Conjunction with SQSPCA Benefit Event

Sponsors, Donors Sought in Conjunction with SQSPCA Benefit Event By DARLA M. YOUNGSCOOPERSTOWN Coming off its most successful year ever of aiding homeless and surrendered animals, and those seized by law enforcement, the Susquehanna Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is seeking sponsors and selling tickets for its first Helping Paws Fashion Show and Benefit to be held on Thursday, June 8 at The Otesaga Resort Hotel. The SQSPCA’s intake numbers have been increasing every year since 2015 and, in 2022, the shelter cared for a record number of animals—just shy of 1,500. This year’s numbers are already…

SQSPCA Works with Troopers on Multiple Animal Rescue

According to Susquehanna Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Executive Director Stacie Haynes, SQSPCA staff has returned to the shelter with more than 20 animals after assisting New York State Troopers with an animal cruelty seizure earlier this morning. Haynes described the animals' living conditions as "horrible." The animals are currently being assessed by the SQSPCA's medical team.…

SQSPCA Seeking Sponsors, Selling Tickets for Fashion Show Benefit Event

SQSPCA Seeking Sponsors,Selling Tickets forFashion Show Benefit Event COOPERSTOWN—The Susquehanna Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals is seeking sponsors and selling tickets for its first Helping Paws Fashion Show and Benefit, to be held on Thursday, June 8 at The Otesaga Resort Hotel. Following cocktails and hors d’oeuvres at 5 p.m. and remarks by SQSPCA Executive Director Stacie Haynes at 5:30, models will strut the catwalk in The Otesaga’s ballroom bedecked in fashions from a number of local apparel and accessory stores, including Kate’s Upstate, Lake Classic Outfitters and the SQSPCA’s own New Leash on Life Thrift Shop,…