About the Delaware SPCA

Our Mission

To enhance the well-being of companion animals with their guardians and communities. We promote the humane treatment of animals by providing adoption opportunities, low-cost veterinary services and educational programs.

What We Do

The Delaware SPCA plays a critical role in our state. We operate a shelter in Stanton that takes in hundreds of animals a year, many of which are in urgent need of care and medical attention before they find new homes. We’re also Delaware’s largest provider of low-cost spay/neuter services.

As a private nonprofit, work we began in the late 19th century continues today, thanks to the support of the community and concerned citizens like you.

Our History

The Delaware SPCA was incorporated in 1873 in response to the mistreatment of livestock being led to market in the city of Wilmington.

In the late 1890s, the society began a contract with the city of Wilmington for dog control, establishing a relationship that continued until early 2014.

The same period also saw the Delaware SPCA begin its work of encouraging humane education in schools.

The Delaware SPCA was based in Wilmington until 1963, when operations were expanded and a new shelter was constructed near Newark.

In the early 1970s, the Delaware SPCA Sussex Chapter was formally annexed, and the Georgetown shelter was opened on Aug. 1, 1972. In the summer of 2017, the shelter was transferred to Brandywine Valley SPCA, which renovated and continues to operate the facility.

In 1973, the Delaware SPCA moved into a new facility, constructed on land donated by local philanthropist Emily du Pont.

In 2009, the society opened the Jane R. Haggard Spay/Neuter Clinic — the first of its kind in Delaware — providing high-volume, high-quality (HVHQ), low-cost spay/neuter services to the public and rescue groups.

In early 2010, in keeping with the commitment to end pet overpopulation, a new spay/neuter van was acquired, and provides transportation of animals across the state to the clinic, removing access as a barrier to services.

In 2016, the shelter was temporarily closed as the board considered selling the land. The community voiced overwhelming support for their shelter, convincing the board to reconsider.

The Delaware SPCA reopened its Stanton shelter in early 2017.

Our Programs


The Delaware SPCA is full of shelter pets looking for their forever home.

Spay/Neuter Surgery

We provide high-quality, affordable spay/neuter services at our clinic. Special programs are available for people who receive public assistance.

Wellness Clinic

The Delaware SPCA offers affordable veterinary care with a variety of services including physical exams, nail trimmings, blood work and more. Appointments start at $35.

Vaccination Clinics

Low-cost vaccination clinics are held monthly at the Stanton shelter. Rabies, distemper and bordetella vaccinations are available, as well as microchipping.

Pet Food Pantry

The Delaware SPCA has a free pet food pantry for pet owners who are on hard times and need a helping hand.