Stories about a Few of Our Extraordinary Efforts to Rescue Cats and Dogs

Where We Started

The SPCA of Northern Virginia rescues cats and dogs from a lot of different circumstances. When first founded in the 1990s, our organization had two court-appointed, licensed humane investigators. So for many years, our focus was on rescuing abused and neglected cats and dogs, along with taking in stray friendly cats and feral kittens, and responding to requests from local shelters.

Where We Are Now

Over the years, the Commonwealth of Virginia phased out their humane investigators program, relying solely on animal control officers to respond to complaints of abuse or neglect. SPCA NOVA has evolved in more recent years by focusing on helping:

  • overcrowded local shelters (cats and dogs),
  • lost or abandoned stray friendly cats living outdoors, and
  • kittens born to feral cats.

Read Our Stories

Below are a few stories about cats and dogs that we rescued under unusual or extraordinary circumstances.


Thank you Rebecca for fostering Smokey. SMOKEY is the sweetest cat! He just wants to be loved. Smokey was found by a kind woman who noticed him coming for the food [...]

Horrific Beginning, Bright Future

By Patti Price & Kathleen MacKinnon From Trauma to Rescue Champ and Lucy are sibling kittens and best friends, bonded forever through their shared traumatic experience of having young boys (only [...]

Layla, the Belly Dancer!

By Kathleen MacKinnon No one expected Layla to survive. But against all odds, looks like she is here to stay! A Frantic Call for Help SPCA received a call from a [...]

Free to Good Home!

By Kathleen MacKinnon The Advertisement Said It All - We Don't Want Her How many times have we seen this? An ad in the newspaper. A poster at a veterinary office. [...]

Going the Extra Mile…

To Help Just One Cat in Your Neighborhood! By Kathleen MacKinnon It Takes Just One Caring Person to Make a Difference A very sweet cat named Phoenix is now safely [...]

Dogs Rescued from Hoarding

By Katie McHenry In August, a hoarding situation in southwest Virginia prompted an animal control investigation, and nearby Ceres-based Lost Fantasy Rescue stepped in to rescue several dogs. The dogs were [...]

Luckless Dogs Get New Lives

By Lyda Gould The Broken Ones Bring the Sweetest Rewards Every year the SPCA of Northern Virginia rescues dogs and cats from a variety of circumstances. Some rescued animals require only [...]

“Weigh” to Go Chico!

By Joan Hughes How much do you weigh? Could you lose nearly half of that weight without jeopardizing your health? A Chihuahua did, and it was almost disastrous. Shameful Neglect Caught [...]