Peaceful Paws

Sometimes the best medicine isn’t delivered by two human hands — it comes on four paws, and goes directly to the heart.

The Santa Cruz SPCA mobilizes the healing power of animal companionship through Peaceful Paws Comfort Canines (PPCC), a program that brings four-legged caregivers — professional snugglers, comforters, and lap warmers — to folks in assisted living facilities, hospitals, hospice centers, and senior communities. Most human participants in the program are bed- or wheelchair bound due to injury or illness, and appreciate a gentle animal’s ability to curl up under the covers, pass the time cuddling, and coax a smile or a laugh.

Our PPCC corps is headed up by Sweet Pea, a rescued senior Chihuahua who has been officially adopted by SCSPCA (but lives with her foster mom!) and whose special gifts inspired the program. Sweet Pea and her fellow canine ambassadors make weekly trips to facilities such as Pacific Coast Manor and Maple House II, and schedule visits to other facilities, centers, and events. They also frequently accompany luncheon participants as they travel to and from social outings with the nonprofit organization Cindy’s Celebrations.

To learn more, or request a visit from a PPCC to your home or care facility, please contact us at 831-465-5000 or send us an email. Visits are coordinated by volunteers and members of our Humane Education team during shelter business hours, 11 am to 6 pm.

Questions? Read our Peaceful Paws FAQs (under the Community Programs drop-down).


Shelter Location

2601 Chanticleer Ave.

Santa Cruz, CA 95065

(P) 831-465-5000 (F) 831-479-8530


Hours of Operation

Mon & Tues - CLOSED

Animal Browsing Wed to Sun 11am - 5pm

*PET FOOD PANTRY - Fridays 1:00pm - 3:00pm

The Santa Cruz SPCA is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to the welfare of animals. We receive no government funding, and depend solely on financial support from our friends. Our organization is not affiliated with any other SPCA or Humane Society.

Tax ID: 94-6171565

© 2017 Santa Cruz SPCA