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How Second Chance is Keeping Pets and People Together in Western Mass

Mulberry Street Vet Hospital is on the Road to Help Pets in Need

SPRINGFIELD, MA (October 18, 2022) — Every day begins with the same question – how are we going to help pets today?  For employees at Second Chance Animal Services in Springfield, the answer is rarely the same.  Some days are spent caring for the many pets who come to the Mulberry Street Community Veterinary Hospital for everything from vaccines to check-ups to sick visits to surgery when they are injured or get into something they shouldn’t.  Other days employees are out in the community like the recent emergency parvo vaccine clinics set up to combat the recent spike in parvovirus cases in the city, or a mobile veterinary visit to low-income seniors to help them care for their pets.  Later this month, a team of seven will travel with two mobile veterinary units to Dalton to spay and neuter an estimated 65 feral cats from nearby Pittsfield in collaboration with the Community Cat Program.

Second Chance CEO and founder Sheryl Blancato underscored the importance of the nonprofit’s work in the community.  “We have helped over 40,000 pets in the Springfield area alone since we opened one of our hospitals here in 2015.  Second Chance first came to the area to host vaccine clinics in response to a parvo outbreak. We saw there was a great need for veterinary care for the underserved in this area and we leased space on Belmont Street to help pet owners care for their pet.  We quickly outgrew that space and moved to what is now our Community Veterinary Hospital on Mulberry Street. But the need is still so tremendous.  Our community vaccine clinics, our Homebound to the Rescue visits and our large-scale spay/neuter missions bring veterinary care to pets who might otherwise have none.”

Second Chance’s Homebound to the Rescue brings free veterinary care to the doorsteps of low-income housing communities, helping to keep pets and seniors together.  The program is funded entirely by generous donations and grants, including a grant from the Banfield Foundation.  The program was established in response to studies showing that seniors with financial limitations will often forgo their own meals to provide for a beloved pet.  Homebound to the Rescue will be visiting Holyoke, Palmer, and multiple locations in Springfield in the next month.

Second Chance has scheduled several FREE vaccine clinics for Springfield dogs in response to the recent uptick in parvovirus cases in the city of Springfield. Parvovirus is a highly contagious and potentially fatal infectious disease that affects primarily young or unvaccinated dogs. Infection occurs after exposure to the virus including contaminated feces. There’s still time for Springfield pet owners to register their pets for one of the free vaccine clinics to be held Thursday, October 20th at the Indian Orchard Fire Station or Saturday, October 29th at 837 State Street. Free rabies vaccinations will also be available.  Pet owners can visit to register.

Second Chance is hosting Cocktails for Tails to benefit the work of the Springfield Community Veterinary hospital team. The fundraiser will be held Thursday, November 3rd from 5:30 to 9:30pm at the Springfield Country Club and will feature live music by John & Christina Cantalini with a variety of food and an open bar, a silent auction and raffle. To purchase tickets, visit  Attendees can save $25 with the code 40000PETS on tickets purchased by October 25th.