News of Otsego County

Susquehanna Animal Shelter

Foundation grant boosts Farm Friends Program capabilities

Foundation grant boosts
Farm Friends Program capabilities

Stacie Haynes, Executive Director of the Susquehanna SPCA, has a frank discussion with a rescued pig in the back of a van.

Thanks to a grant from the John T. and Jane A. Wiederhold Foundation, Otsego County’s only farm animal rescue program is poised to take things to the next level.

The Susquehanna Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SQSPCA) Farm Friends Program began as an offshoot of the Otsego County Animal Cruelty Task Force, an ongoing partnership between the SQSPCA, the Sheriff’s Department, the District Attorney’s Office, and local veterinarians since 2019.

The SQSPCA hosts an animal cruelty hotline, assists with cruelty investigations, and houses and/or finds temporary housing for animals that have been seized from cruelty situations.

The Farm Friends Program and its “Here To Help Hotline” were established in January of 2021 to prevent hardship from escalating to cruelty.

“After two years of patchwork solutions to address an ever-increasing number of situations involving farm animals, we began to analyze our farm animal cruelty data to develop a more proactive approach. It became clear that we — the SQSPCA — are receiving these cruelty calls because there are simply no farm animal rescue or farm relief organizations in this rural and low-income region,” explained SQSPCA Executive Director Stacie Haynes.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Sunrise Photography walk on the lake 08-16-21

Sunrise Photography walk on the lake


PHOTOGRAPHY EXCURSION – 6 – 7 a.m. Enjoy early morning walk and photo lesson all about how to photograph Otsego lake at sunrise. Presented by staff member Kevin Gray providing tips on composition, light & shadow, techniques and more. Cost, $17/non-member. Fenimore Art Museum, Cooperstown. 607-547-1400 or visit

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Susquehanna SPCA Opens New Building 07-17-21

Susquehanna SPCA Opens New Building


GRAND OPENING – 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. Celebrate the opening of the Susquehanna SPCA’s new complex with ribbon cutting (10:45 a.m.) and an open house. Come explore the new facility, meet some cute animals (maybe take one home?) and more. Registration encouraged. Susquehanna SPCA, 5082-5088 St. Hwy. 28, Cooperstown. 607-547-8111 or visit

Cooperstown & Around: July 15, 2021

Cooperstown & Around

Animal shelter to host open house of new facility

The Susquehanna SPCA is having a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 10:45 a.m. Saturday, July 17, in order to celebrate the completion of its animal shelter and campus.
The ribbon-cutting will be followed by an open house until 4 p.m.
The new shelter is at 5082-5088 State Route 28, just south of Cooperstown.

Cooperstown Center to host circus shows

There will be a free circus on Friday, July 16, at the Cooperstown Center and Centers Home Care on Phoenix Mills Road in the town of Otsego.
There will be two performances, at 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. There will be food vendors on site.
Attendees are encouraged to bring lawn chairs. Seating is limited. Call 607-544-2600 for more information.

Best Bets: June 17, 2021


Run for the Susquehanna SPCA,
Celebrate Juneteenth, more.

Run to support the Susquehanna SPCA. This year the shelter is partnering with three local breweries to raise funds for animals in need. The 0.5K Fun Run is a kid-friendly event beginning at 8:30 a.m., the 5K at 9:15, and the 10K at 9. There will also be a pet parade with prizes. Cost is $10 for ages 13+ in the 0.5K, $30 for adults in the 5K and 10K. Age-appropriate drinks will be provided to the runners. Winners will have an adoption sponsored in their names. Starts at Brewery Ommegang, 656 Co. Hwy. 33, near Cooperstown, on Saturday, June 19. Call 607-547-8111 or visit

Celebrate the liberation of the last enslaved people in the U.S. this Juneteenth. Live music, free food, art from local artists, speeches, and more. 3 p.m. Neahwa park, Oneonta. Saturday, June 19. Visit

Hang out at Fire Pit Friday with friends and enjoy The Beadle Brothers live performance of modern country music, from 7 to 10 p.m., at Brewery Ommegang, 656 county Route 33, near Cooperstown. Friday, June 18. Call 607-544-1800 or visit

Get the teens out of the house for fun game of Fizzball with the Teen Center and Otsego Pride Alliance. Bring a garbage-bag smock, goggles and get ready to have some fun. New players are welcome. At 7 p.m., Friday, June 18. Meet at The Skatehouse, Neahwa Park in Oneonta. Call 607-441-3999 or visit

The Oneonta Outlaws will host the Amsterdam Mohawks. Children 18 and under get free admission, sponsored by SFCU. 7 p.m., Thursday, June 17. Damaschke Field in Oneonta.



Winery Plans

Tasting Room

The Susquehanna Animal Shelter in Hartwick Seminary has been sold to Montezuma Winery, Seneca Falls.

HARTWICK SEMINARY – Montezuma Winery & Hidden Marsh Distillery in Seneca Falls has bought the Susquehanna Animal Shelter property, and plans to put a tasting room in the Thrift Shop, SQSPCA Executive Director Stacie Haynes confirmed a few minutes ago.

The other buildings may be used for wine storage, but “what was really attractive to them was the space,” said Haynes.  “We have backyards here, bordering on (Oaks Creek), that are gorgeous.  Very quiet and tranquil.”

The SQSPCA is building a new $5 million animal shelter about a half-mile north on Route 28, and is expecting to have a grand opening there this spring.

Max, SQSPCA Director To Swap Places For Day

He’s Been Confined For 444 Days

Max, SQSPCA Director

To Swap Places For Day

Max has spent one year, 78 days at the Susquehanna Animal Shelter, waiting to be adopted.

HARTWICK SEMINARY – Max, a long-time shelter resident, will move into SQSPCA Executive Director Stacie Haynes office this coming Wednesday, and Hayne will move into his cage for a day.

Will Stacie by smiling at the end of Wednesday?

The idea is to drive home to the public – and Stacie – what an extended stay means for shelter dogs, and the importance of adopting shelter dogs as quickly as possible.

“March 3 marks Max’s 444th day here at our shelter,” explained Haynes. “Max has been living in a kennel for over a year, with no comfy couch, no home or human to call his own, and an ever-changing parade of complete strangers judging both him and his behavior. Before that, he was in a different shelter for about four months.”

Facing Breast Cancer, Zoe ‘Always Has Smile On Face’

Living Happy

Facing Breast Cancer, Zoe ‘Always Has Smile On Face’


Zoe plays happily with her canine pals, Sabrina and Bentley, at the farm where she was adopted. However, a cancer recurrence has been diagnosed, leaving her with an estimated 18 months to live. (Ian Austin/

After a year and some happy months on the other side of neglect, 10-year-old German Shepherd Zoe has been diagnosed with breast cancer.

Zoe first captured the hearts of people across the region – and beyond – when rescued from her home on Nov. 15, 2019, after a UPS driver spotted a dog that appeared to “have had its leg blown off.”

After an X-ray showed “bones in her belly,” confirming Zoe had chewed off her own leg, it was later determined that it was not done out of hunger, but rather out of pain.

Zoe had a large – fortunately benign – mass on her left shoulder that was removed at Cornell University while she was receiving medical attention for her missing leg.

A local farmer, who wishes to remain anonymous, fostered Zoe right away before later adopting her, explaining he was lucky to get her as she was inquired about as far away as Texas in the continental United States and Israel globally.

Animal Cruelty Hotline Announced By SQSPCA

Need Help With Your

Animals? Call This #

Pittsfield Pony, Rabbit Deaths Spur Move

HARTWICK SEMINARY – Following last Friday’s rescue of a horse and two cats from a Pittsfield property where a pony, three rabbits and a chicken had died, the Susquehanna SPCA today announced a hotline for people who need help caring for their animals.

The hotline is (607) 547-8111, extension 108.

“Over and over again, we are witness to horrific scenes of animals that have suffered unnecessarily and died,” said SQSPCA Executive Director Stacie Haynes. “We have seen this happen with domestic animals but more often, it is farm animals.”

National Pioneer Tours State-Of-Art Shelter

National Pioneer Tours State-Of-Art Shelter


Modern animal shelter pioneer Scott Learned of Design Learned, Norwich, Conn.,examines the drains in the double-cage kennels-to-be at the new Susquehanna Animal Shelter, now under construction on Route 28, Index. Smell control will be a key factor in maintaining a tranquil environment for the would-be adoptees. (Jim Kevlin/

When Stacie Haynes joined the Susquehanna Animal Shelter as executive director in 2015, she discovered one of the dogs had been in its kennel for more than 400 days.
Today, shelter stays are typically 14-21 days, she reports.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Virtual Frostbite 5K 12-03-20

Virtual Frostbite 5K


FROSTBITE 5K – Ongoing. Run, walk, or bike anytime during the month of December. Post your results, then a picture of yourself in an ugly sweater with your race bib for the chance to win prizes. Benefit for the Oneonta YMCA. 607-432-0010 or visit

ANGEL TREE PROGRAM – Give the Gift of Christmas this holiday season. Adopt a family in need. Visit to learn how.

HAPPENIN’ OTSEGO: Healthy Eating This Holiday Season 12-02-20

Eat Healthy This Holiday Season


HOLIDAY EATING – 10:30 a.m. Fun webinar for holiday meal makers, celebrators, and eaters of any age. Learn tips/tricks to for a healthy & enjoyable holiday season. Free, registration required for Zoom meeting. Presented by Cornell Cooperative Extension of Schoharie & Otsego Counties. 518-234-4303 ext. 120 or visit

ANGEL TREE PROGRAM – Give the Gift of Christmas this holiday season. Adopt a family in need. Visit to learn how.

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21 Railroad Ave. Cooperstown, New York 13326 • (607) 547-6103