Welcome to the HSP Reference Page!
New to HSP? Wanna brush up on who does what and what goes where? Animal sheltering is naturally an ever-changing workplace, as the animals never stop! HSP is constantly trying to find more efficient ways of operating, so the environment is fast-paced, but this page is designed to help you navigate the wonderful world that is The Humane Society of Pinellas!
Below you will find out about new policies, procedures and happenings in our What's New section. Our Who's Who portion of this page will explain different key employee roles and which staffer is responsible for what here at the shelter. You will also find some commonly asked questions that relate to each department.
staff clock in
- Crystal Miller has joined us as the new Adoption Center Supervisor! Welcome to the team!
- We say goodbye to Twila Cole after a decade of working at HSP - we wish her the best as she grows her own business!
- Lucy has interns! Anticipate lots of extra hands with Senior Pet Connection and Summer Camp preparation!
- Agility classes are here! Check out the Behavior and Training page for details and dates!
who is who
Since HSP is such a small organization, many of the staff wear a variety of hats and have multiple job functions. Figuring out who is responsible for what job duty can be confusing for new staff and volunteers. Here is a brief run-down of the main point people you will interact with at HSP!
Stacey Efaw, Executive Director - Stacey is the face of HSP. Stacey is responsible for overseeing all shelter Directors, networks with local businesses and donors, and ensures the mission of HSP is being carried out by all staff and volunteers. Stacey's office is located in the Palestra Humane Education Center.
Amanda Audia, Director of Operations - Amanda is responsible for overseeing all shelter operations. She supervises the managers for the following departments: Admissions, Animal Care, Behavior, Customer Service, Volunteers and Humane Ed/Outreach. New policies and procedures must be approved by her, so ultimately if you have a policy/procedure question, she'll probably know the answer! Amanda also manages the HSP website, security & email system and PetPoint Animal Management software. Her office is located on the second floor of the Adoption Center.
Sharon Boyes, Director of Development - Sharon is responsible for all fundraising and donor relations at HSP. Businesses and supporters looking to make donations, set up planned giving, or any other large donation, should be provided with Sharon's information. Her office is located in the Palestra Humane Education Center.
Susie Harris, Director of Finance and Human Resources - Susie is HSP's money guru! She is responsible for all staff paychecks, financial reimbursement, human resource functions (worker's compensation claims, health insurance), HSP's business accounts and she receives all mail before distribution to the appropriate party. Her office is located on the second floor of the Adoption Center.
Dr. Brenton Gallas, Medical Director - Dr. Gallas supervises the Clinic veterinarians, as well as the managers for both the Pet Clinic and Medical Department. Dr. Gallas's office is located near the Admissions office in the Sterling and Calvin Medical Center.
Vanessa Ply, Volunteer Coordinator - The Volunteer Coordinator is the main point of contact and supervisor for all on-site and event volunteers. Vanessa reviews all volunteer applications, coordinates training and schedules, and handles all volunteer disciplinary action. Vanessa's office is next to the Volunteer Office in the Adoption Center.
Lucy Monette, Humane Education and Outreach Coordinator - Lucy coordinates community outreach (Senior Pet Connection) and humane education classes (Kid's Camp and Clubs). Lucy spends her time in the Palestra Humane Education Center or in the Director of Operations' office on the second floor of the Adoption Center.
Amanda Witt, Lead Veterinary Technician - Amanda manages the veterinary technicians in the Medical Department. All medical questions and concerns should be brought to her attention. Amanda also coordinates all transfers with the assistance of the Behavior Department and under the supervision of the Director of Operations. Amanda does not have an office, but can be found in the Dog Tech room in the Sterling & Calvin Medical Center.
Jen Burdick, Lead Animal Caretaker - Jen manages the animal caretakers/adoption counselors. Jen is responsible for scheduling, supply ordering and should be the primary point of contact for any questions regarding Animal Care.
Giselle Ford, Intake Manager - Giselle manages the Compassion Counselors in the Admissions Department. Giselle coordinates all surrenders and stray intakes to the shelter. Any questions regarding animal intake should be referred to Giselle. Giselle does not have an office, but can be found in the Cat Tech room or Admissions Office in the Sterling & Calvin Medical Center.
Heather Gibbs, Lead Behavior Technician - Heather is responsible for all evaluations, temperament testing, behavior modification and consultations for shelter pets. She also conducts the training classes for the public. If you have a concern/behavioral observation about an HSP pet, or if a client is seeking behavior/training advice or class registration, Heather is the point of contact. Heather's office is located in the Quiet Room (off of Main Street, near Dog Laundry).
Christina Greene, Clinic Manager - Christina manages all clinic staff and activities, including the Mobile Medical Unit and spay/neuter services at HSP. Christina also orders all volunteer and staff prescription pet food. She can be found in the Pet Clinic!
What does it mean when we say we are a "no-kill" shelter? HSP does not euthanize for space or treatable medical/behavioral conditions. To be considered a no-kill facility, a shelter must have a live release rate of 90% or higher. HSP's live release rate is steadily 98%.
Is HSP open or limited admission? HSP is actually a managed admission facility. We don't refer to ourselves as limited, as we treat every pet as an individual and do not discriminate based on breed, age, medical or behavioral status. We say that we are managed because as a small, no-kill facility, we can only accept pets that we have the resources to treat.
Does HSP accept stray pets? While HSP encourages all finders of strays to go to Pinellas County Animal Services (PCAS) for the best chance of reunion with their owner(s), we sometimes can accommodate stray pets. If a person contacts us via phone, we refer them to PCAS. If the person is on site, please refer them to the Admissions Department.
How do I surrender my pet to HSP? All pets surrendered to HSP must have an application completed on our website before being considered for admission. The Admissions team reviews applications and responds within 24-48 hours.
Does HSP accept walk-in surrenders? Admissions books by appointment only; however, walk-ins can sometimes be accommodated. If someone arrives at the shelter with their pet for surrender and they do not have an appointment, please physically escort them to the Admissions Office and let them know the team may be able to help.
Does HSP accept wildlife? All phone inquiries for wildlife should be referred to SPCA Tampa Bay. For walk-in wildlife inquiries, please direct the client to the Admissions office.
What are the adoption qualifications at HSP? An adopter must be 18+ and have a valid photo ID. The adopter must complete an application, called an Adopter Profile, prior to meeting with a pet.
What are the adoption prices? Our adoption fees vary based on the pet. All adoptable pets on our website will have the price listed in their profile.
Are the pets on the website available for adoption? Our website is updated live, so the pets on the site are currently available; however, a pet may be on hold. Verify with a Customer Service representative that there are no holds on the pet before confirming availability.
What is the adoption process? All potential adopters must complete an adopter profile with Customer Service. This profile is then run through our system to ensure the person is eligible for adoption. The client then meets with an Adoption Counselor and interacts with our pets. All adoptions must be approved by the counselor and most adoptions occur same day.
Does the clinic accept walk-in clients? Yes, if they have the time. We always encourage clients to make an appointment to ensure they can be seen. If the clinic is fully booked and busy, they may not be able to accommodate a walk-in appointment. All spay/neuter surgeries must have an appointment.
Does the clinic accommodate emergencies? No. The clinic does not have the ability to treat pets experiencing medical emergencies. The client should be encouraged to google emergency clinics in their area. The clinic is also unable to perform certain diagnostic testing, such as x-rays and ultrasounds.
A customer has a concern about the clinic. Who do I get them in touch with? Christina handles all customer inquiries and concerns. You can give her the customer's information and she will contact them.
A great rule of thumb when accepting donations is to check the Wishlist. If the item is not on our Wishlist, chances are we don't need it and will end up discarding it (and more trash actually costs us money!). To avoid extra clutter around the shelter, ensure we can use the item before accepting it. Things we cannot ever accept include:
- Unmarked, unlabeled or homemade cleaning products. This includes pre-mixed bleach solutions and household grade disinfectants. We only use bleach and Accelerated Hydrogen Peroxide to disinfect at the shelter.
- Broken items or items missing essential pieces.
- Soiled or dirty towels, sheets or blankets.
- Human clothing. We can accept baby socks on occasion for homemade cat toys. Ask Lucy if she needs some!
- Opened or expired pet food.
- Drugs of any kind, including flea/heartworm prevention. We cannot have this on site and any donor must be informed they cannot leave these items with us - it's illegal!
Sometimes it may feel awkward to not accept a donation; however, people donate items because they want to be helpful. The items won't be helpful in our dumpster and another organization may be able to utilize the product.
pet food pantry
The Humane Society of Pinellas believes that all pet owners deserve support, especially in times of financial difficulty. For this reason, HSP collects pet food from generous donors and distributes this food to pet owners in need.
The Humane Society of Pinellas believes that no animal should go hungry. The goals of the HSP Pet Food Pantry are to assist our community’s pet owners in feeding their pets in the event of financial crisis, to support and promote responsible pet ownership, and to provide good stewardship of our donors’ contributions.
Clients are eligible for the Pet Food Pantry without proof of need for 90 days. After 90 days, the client must provide proof that he/she is unemployed or on government assistance or disability. This proof of need must be provided every month after the initial 90 days and this must be recorded in the client’s profile.
Clients’ pets do not have to be up-to-date on vaccinations or altered in order to benefit from the program. HSP understands that if a client cannot afford pet food, he/she likely cannot afford surgery or vaccinations; however, it is HSP policy that unaltered and unvaccinated pets are only eligible for the program for one year. After one year, clients must make a spay/neuter appointment, as well as update their pets’ vaccinations, with our Pet Clinic or a local veterinarian. Clients can participate in our Mobile Medical Unit if they qualify.
The Humane Society of Pinellas does reserve the right to refuse food distribution for any reason.
All clients must complete the Pet Food Pantry Client Profile prior to enrollment. Information on our low-cost Pet Clinic, vaccinations and spay/neuter must be distributed to all clients.
We also ask each client that he/she is not to adopt other animals while taking advantage of our Pet Food Pantry. It is HSP policy that all Food Pantry participants be put on our “Do Not Adopt” list while participating in our program. Upon enrollment, the client must be entered into PetPoint, listed as Do Not Adopt in the associations tab, and a memo must be entered indicating the individual is currently utilizing the Pet Food Pantry. Once clients no longer participate in the program, they are re-eligible to adopt from HSP.
Food distribution is in the Adoption Center. Only unexpired pet food that we receive in sealed bags can be distributed to Pet Food Pantry clients. Each client can only receive one month’s worth of pet food one time per month.
Clients must show a valid form if ID at the time of distribution. If they have received food for more than 90 days, the client must show proof of need each month.
Unfortunately, we cannot guarantee the availability of food each month. We recommend clients call ahead to ensure we have adequate food to fit their needs. We also request that whenever possible, clients come during the week instead of during busy weekend hours; however, no client will be turned away because of time of day.
Staff or volunteers distributing food must record the date, confirm ID and/or proof of need, and record the amount of food distributed. The staff or volunteer must also ask how many pets the client has. If the number of pets has changed compared to the month before, he/she must remind the client that HSP cannot continue to provide food to clients acquiring new pets.
senior pet connection
Senior Pet Connection supports low-income and homebound seniors by making monthly deliveries of pet food and supplies at no cost. Like a "meals on wheels" for pets, this program allows seniors to provide the level of care they know their pets deserve, without having to leave their home. Our dedicated staff and volunteers also assist participants with routine vaccines and preventatives in addition to the pet food.
Many different types of food donations can be utilized by Senior Pet Connection. Any of the following items can be stored in the Senior Pet Connection storage room (by Cat Laundry):
- Bird seed
- Meat flavored baby food
- Fancy Feast Classic (no fish)
- Grain free dry dog food
- Friskies Indoor Delights
- Nine Lives Plus Care
- Wet dog food (no gravy)
- Friskies canned food (all flavors)
Would something else help you on this page? I love suggestions! Email me, Amanda Audia, at AmandaA@HumanePinellas.org and I will add it!