Updated November 26, 2021
Over the past year we hit our stride serving our community as an essential service during the COVID-19 pandemic. As part of the critical infrastructure of the city, we served thousands of veterinary clients, adopted out close to 2,500 cats/kittens/dogs/puppies, and helped thousands in our Community Animal Care Clinic.
As the pandemic is becoming more controlled and restrictions are lifted for the orange tier, we are still abiding by the recommendations of the California Department of Public Health and San Francisco Department of Public Health to maintain social distancing and continue safety protocols.
What does this mean for you and your pets? As you know, your safety is our priority and your pet’s health is our calling. We are here for you despite the evolving pandemic and aim to continue to operate at our broadest capacity possible relative to the level of health orders.
We are open and available for medical appointments and we are doing what we can to meet the high demand for veterinary care. All non-urgent appointments are currently being booked 8+ weeks out. We need your help and ask you to consider your pet’s medical needs and determine if they are currently necessary or if they can wait.
If you are sick and your animal needs medical care, please do not come directly to our hospital. Instead, call us at (415) 554-3030 and we will make arrangements to provide care.
For Urgent Care or Emergency Services, please call our Mission Hospital at (415) 554-3030. Please note that time-sensitive wellness care does not qualify for our urgent care and emergency care services.
Hours for Emergency Services
Our Mission Campus at 201 Alabama Street is available for emergency Sunday through Friday from 8am-12pm (noon) or until capacity is reached.
Please call (415) 554-3030 if your pet is experiencing an emergency.
Since we are now fully available for appointments onsite, we will no longer be offering telemedicine appointments.
Existing Prescriptions and Pharmacy
For current prescriptions, you can contact our pharmacy at (415) 554-3030 if you have an expiring prescription and are unable to get an appointment. The California Veterinary Medical Board has extended some pets’ prescriptions validity beyond the original date and they are now valid for 6 to 8 months from the date of the last appointment. You can still get refills by calling (415) 554-3030.
Our Adoption Center is now open from 10am-6pm (Mon – Wed, Fri – Sun) and 1pm-6pm (Thur)! We’re excited to welcome our community back onsite and you are invited to come see the adorable animals ready to find forever homes.
The San Francisco SPCA is a non-profit that exists due to the generosity of our community. Please consider a tax-deductible gift to help ensure we will be here in the future to serve the needs of owned and unowned animals.
Make a Donation
This page was last updated at 14:55 on Thursday, November 5th, 2020.
Dear Friends of the San Francisco SPCA,
Thank you for making all of our lifesaving work possible. We cannot continue to save lives without you. Governor Newsom recently updated his stay-at-home order to clarify that animal care facilities, including animal shelters are essential services.
We are doing everything we can to keep our staff healthy so we can continue to be here for you if your beloved pet needs urgent care and to be here for our shelter animals.
Here is the status of our programs and services:
Hospital: Currently, we are open for routine, sick, urgent, and emergency care. (See Telemedicine below for non-emergency veterinary issues.) Our urgent care hours are: Pacific Heights Campus 8am-12am, 7 days a week; and Mission Campus 8am-5pm, 7 days a week. Our online pharmacy and pet supply store is open 24/7.
Please note: facial masks are required for entering our buildings.
Telemedicine: Telemedicine appointments by phone or online video are now available through both our Mission and Pacific Heights Campus hospitals during Monday through Saturday 8:30am-5:00pm. Just call 415-554-3030 for an appointment.
Behavior: Telemedicine appointments by phone or online video are now available for all problem behaviors. Visit our Behavior Specialty page for more information or call us at 415-554-3074 to schedule an appointment.
Adoptions: Our Adoption Center is currently open by appointment only. If you are interested in adopting a specific animal, please click on this link and complete a quick form. We will then email you information on our adoption process, FAQs, and details on how to confirm your interest in adopting.
Spay/Neuter Clinic: As of June 1st, we are offering limited spay/neuter surgeries. Please call our Client Contact Center at 415-554-3030.
Foster: Many of our shelter animals are now in loving, temporary foster homes. Our dedicated staff continue to take care of all of the remaining animals in our shelter. If you have signed up to foster an animal, we will be in touch with you soon.
Community Services: Call Ahead Clinic (formerly Walk-In Wellness Clinic) is open Tuesday 8am-5pm. Please call 415-522-3560 to schedule an appointment. Mobile Vaccine Clinics are temporarily suspended.
Animal Assisted Therapy: We have suspended in-person AAT visits, and we’re moving toward video sharing to bring the healing power of animals to those who need it most.
Donations: During this difficult time, we need your support to continue our lifesaving work. Help animals in need today. Make a Donation
Volunteer Programs: We have temporarily halted Volunteer Programs in our shelter, including postponing Volunteer Info Sessions. We look forward to welcoming new volunteers to help us care for cats, dogs, and the people who love them in the near future. When Volunteer Info Sessions return, you will find their upcoming dates posted here.
The Sido Program: Since the San Francisco SPCA saved Sido the dog from unnecessary euthanasia in 1979, we have helped thousands more cats and dogs who outlived their guardians. During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Sido program continues to offer pet guardians peace of mind regarding the future of their cats and dogs. Click here if you are interested in learning more and signing up for the Sido Program.
Check out our COVID-19 FAQs below for answers to the top questions we are hearing from our community. Get the most updated information by subscribing to our newsletter or following us on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, and Twitter.
So many of you have reached out asking how you can help. Your compassion shows no limits.
Right now, monetary donations made online are most needed, as they allow us to quickly meet the most pressing needs. Your support will save animals during and after this crisis.
If you would like to donate pet food or other essentials, please visit our In-Kind Donations page for more information and links to our Amazon wish lists. Due to the public health order, please don’t bring items to our locations.
Thank you for everything you do to support animals in need, and make our life-saving work possible!
This FAQ was last updated at 2:34 PM on Wednesday, July 21st, 2021.
As COVID-19 becomes more of a reality for all of us, please know that we are still your trusted and longtime partner, and we are doing everything in our power to be here if your pet needs medical care during this crisis.
Be assured that we have protocols in place to address the variety of health and safety issues at hand. While we have always ensured the highest levels of cleanliness and sanitation, we have updated our guidelines in direct response to the emergence of COVID-19 as per the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization.
We are here:
We recommend all staff and volunteers adhere to CDC personal hygiene protocols. We have also increased the frequency and level of cleaning at both our Mission and Pacific Heights campuses. We are adhering to the Governor’s, SF mayor’s and SF department of Health and Emergency Services guidance including suspending large gatherings. We have temporarily suspended volunteer visits with our Animal Assisted Therapy program, cancelled mobile vaccine clinics.
Our teams are well attuned to biosecurity measures to keep animals disease free in our shelter/adoptions and hospital. In addition to our normal high standards of cleanliness and biosecurity for our animals, we’ve instituted routine sanitation of public spaces and shared workstations.
We are continuing to monitor local and federal health agencies for guidance to ensure our actions align with their recommendations.
On April 21, the CDC and USDA announced the first confirmed cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection in two pets in the United States. Two cats in New York state have tested positive and exhibited mild respiratory signs. The cats are not from the same household but each lived with a person positive for COVID-19. Both cats are expected to recover.
Some pets (cats, hamsters and ferrets) might develop mild illness if exposed to a person with COVID-19 but there is no evidence pets can transmit SARS-CoV-2 to people.
Until more is known about this virus, if you are ill with COVID-19 you should restrict contact with pets and other animals, just as you would restrict your contact with other people. When possible, have another member of your household care for any animals while you are sick. If you have a service animal or you must care for your animals, wear a cloth face covering; don’t pet, share food, kiss, or hug them; and wash your hands before and after any contact with your pet, service animal, or other animals. You should not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, or bedding with other people or pets in your home. (Source: AVMA)
We recommend following the CDC guidelines for pet owners who are sick with COVID-19.
The virus interacts with animals the same way it does with surfaces. It may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or animal that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly eyes, but this is not thought to be the way the virus spreads. Source: CDC
It’s important to have plans for your pets regardless of the type of emergency. You should stock up on food, medications, and flea/tick prevention for your pet; ensure your pet is updated on their vaccines and antiparasitics/dewormers; and check that their microchip information in accurate.
It is best if your pet can remain in its home or with a friend or family member. If that isn’t possible you may need to board your pet. We advise that you call and make sure your animal has the vaccinations/preventives required for a stay.
Your animal may be treated at our hospitals. Please notify us in advance of your appointment so we can follow certain protocol upon your pet’s arrival.
Yes, you can still walk your dog, but is important to maintain social distancing and wash your hands thoroughly afterward. The CDC recommends walking dogs on a leash, maintaining at least 6 feet from other people and animals. The CDC also advises against going to crowded dog parks our public places where a large number of people and dogs gather.
Check with your dog walker or trainer regarding their protocols. In most cases the answer is yes—and keep social distances. This is also a good time to work in small classes or individual sessions to hone your pup’s skills.
Please contact your veterinarian to request necessary medicine which may be able to be ordered through our online pharmacy.
In addition to our normal high standards of cleanliness, we have increased our frequency and level of sanitizing our campus and have hand sanitizers and public restrooms so clients can sanitize their hands.
We can certainly reschedule for a later date or cancel if you prefer. During this time, we are waiving appointment cancellation fees.
To expedite the adoption process, please complete the cat or dog adoption form and bring a printed copy with you to the SF SPCA Adoption Center (Hours & Location). This helps us better understand what sort of pet you’re looking for so we can guide you every step of the way! Please bring a valid photo ID and verification that you are allowed to have a pet where you currently live.
First, we’ll meet with you to find out more about you and your pet preferences and answer your questions. Our goal is to help you find the pet that best fits your lifestyle and living situation so we want to make sure you have a realistic understanding of the time and resources necessary to provide training, medical treatment, and proper care for your new pet. This can take time so please allow at least one hour for the adoption process.
Once we have a good understanding of your living situation and the type of pet you’re interested in, we’ll make introductions and let you spend some quality time getting to know each other to see if there’s a love connection. It’s important that all household members take part in this important decision so please make sure everyone is present (including any resident dogs if you’re considering adding a new pooch to your pack).
Once love happens, we’ll complete the paperwork, review all the SF SPCA adoption benefits, provide information on any known medical or behavioral issues, and share tips to make the transition a success for both you and your new pet.
We consider you and your new furry friend a part of the SF SPCA family so please reach out with questions ― and be sure to share your adoption stories and pet photos at sfspca.org/stories
Don’t forget to schedule your first free health exam at the SF SPCA Veterinary Hospital within three days of adopting.