VIRGINIA BEACH The Virginia Beach SPCA stepped in to help a Tidewater Community College student during a crisis.

Mikaela Weiss was injured in a car accident in January. She said another driver hit her, causing her to crash into a tree. Weiss was in a coma for about a week.

While she was in the hospital, the Virginia Beach SPCA took care of Weiss's two dogs and cat. The center has a 'Hope' program, where workers watch over pets during emergency situations.
When Weiss awoke from her coma, she was worried about her pets. That's when she learned the SPCA was already taking care of them.

'I was really grateful because if they weren't taken care of, I wouldn't know what I would've done.' Weiss said she lives by herself, and she doesn't have any immediate family in the area.

SPCA Community Outreach Director Amanda Panuline was glad to help Weiss. 'She was awake finally, and it was just such a good mood for the whole day. We were so happy.'

The SPCA's Hope program also helps people with pets who are having a hard time making ends meet.
People who meet eligibility requirements (i.e. unemployment statement, food stamp eligibility, or foreclosure notice) can receive pet food and limited veterinary services. 'We want to help people keep their companion animals during economic crises' said Sharon Adams, Executive Director, for the Virginia Beach SPCA. 'We trust that by helping people through a tough time we can offer hope to families who feel as if they are losing everything, including their furry best friends.'

Donations to the SPCA allow them to help people like Weiss.

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