Yom Kippur: Making Atonement with Donating to Charity

SPCA Israel asks to raise public awareness of the option of exchanging the custom of slaughtering chickens by way of making atonement before Yom Kippur with donating to charity

As in previous years, the Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Israel has set out on its campaign to raise public awareness of the option of exchanging the custom of slaughtering chickens by way of making atonement before Yom Kippur with donating to charity. In the framework of the campaign in previous years, the Society brought the topic to the public agenda by way of the media, informational pamphlets were distributed in synagogues and in various centers, and several Rabbis and parliament members joined the call of the Society and recommended to the public to replace the Kaparot ceremony with the giving of donations to the poor.

The custom of Kaparot, which is carried out during the Ten Days of Repentance or in the early morning of the eve of the Day of Atonement, is intended to atone for man’s sins through slaughtering chickens. The origin of the custom, prevalent since the 6th Century, came to offer an alternative to the atonement ceremony where a scapegoat was sacrificed in the Holy Temple.The chickens used for the atonement, are raised in extremely crowded conditions, brought under inhumane conditions to those who follow the custom, and are often left to wait long hours without food and water, until their slaughter. Some of them dehydrate and die in agony while waiting and some of those who survive till the end, continue to expire and twitch in agony until finally succumbing to their death, following the slaughter.

Those who are interested may donate to a special project happening these days in the Association – improving the living conditions of chickens who came to us after being injured, and moving them from the petting corner to a special compound integrated with organic vegetable garden.

In order to keep on helping the animals, take in, take care, rehabilitate and find the best homes for them, to stop suffering and misery, to defend their rights – we need your support. Every donation, big or small, will help us help them. You may donate through our website.

Over the years disagreements broke out with regard to religious law relating to the slaughter of the chickens, and different rabbinical authorities (among them Rabbi Solomon Ben Aderet, Rabbi Yosef Karo (the author of the Shulchan Aruch), Rabbi Moshe Ben Nachman and others) expressed objections to this act, saying it should be replaced by giving charity to the poor or through the use of plants instead of chickens.

We believe that on Yom Kippur, a time of self-examination, we should show mercy and compassion to animals and not cause them any pain or suffering. On this day in particular it is appropriate to help the weak and needy by giving donations and being charitable.

We wish you an easy fast and May You be Inscribed in the Book of Life.

Law and Order

A special collaboration: Israeli police cadets undergo advanced training at the Society in order to become familiarized with the Animal Welfare Law and its implications, to improve enforcement of the law and reduce cases of abuse

For improved enforcement of the Animal Welfare Law and significant reduction in occurrences of animal abuse, a special collaboration between the SPCA and the Israeli police was launched recently.

As part of a unique Israeli project, police cadets from Beit-Shemesh are undergoing special training at the SPCA. The objective is to reinforce the future police officers’ affinity towards animal rights issues.

The cadets learn about the Animal Welfare Law initiated by the SPCA in 1994. According to this law, it is deemed a criminal act to harm, abuse or abandon animals, and the law defines the enforcement mechanisms on the subject. In addition, the cadets learn about the Society, which is celebrating 90 years of activity, tour their grounds, get to know the animals and walk the abandoned dogs, some of which suffered abuse and neglect before arriving at the shelter.

Yaniv Ovadia from the Society’s Humane Education Department says, “We hope that the combination of instilling in the cadets the principles of the law and creating an emotional bond between them and the animals residing at the Society will reinforce the police cadets’ affinity towards the painful subject of animal welfare in Israel, and bring about improved enforcement of the law and a significant reduction in the number of animal abuse cases”.

Sia Dolorosa

A dog,cruelly tied to a pole in the sea, almost drowned. She was saved by a passer-by, received dedicated treatment at the SPCA and has found a warm home

Yet again we see that there is no end to ignorance and cruelty. Fortunately, this time a life was saved.

While jogging on the beach in Jisr al-Zarqa [an Arab coastal town], AssafZargarian noticed something suspicious in the water. When he approached the scene, he was shocked to find a helpless dog tied to a pole in the sea, the high waves threatening to drown her. Assaf rushed to untie the knot and free the dog, after which he phoned the SPCA Israel call center.

A passing teenager explained that he had seen a young boy tie the dog to the pole,probably thinking this was the way to rid her of the ticks on her body. Since the young boy had vanished, a complaint could not be brought against the offender.

The SPCA rescuers took the dog to the veterinary clinic, where she was treated and given the name Sia. The SPCA team and volunteers showered Sia with love for weeks and helped her forget the trauma she’d been through. She received the necessary vaccinations and an electronic chip, was spayed and began waiting patiently for the right family to adopt her.

Sia, a two-year-old mixed breed, is a gentle, devoted and quiet dog that craves affection. While on a walk in the SPCA yard with one of our volunteers she was noticed by the Goldstein family who had come to adopt a dog. They fell in love with Sia at first sight and after hearing her story they promised to give her a warm home and treat her with love.

We are grateful to Assaf, whose quick actions rescued Sia and gave her a chance at a better life.

To raise awareness and prevent cases of cruelty to animals, the SPCA’s Humane Education Department regularly holds special educational activities in the Arab sector.

If you have encountered an animal in distress, please do not ignore it. Call us at *4553 or report to the appropriate authorities.

The Pink Panther

After suffering severe abuse and being rescued and rehabilitated at SPCA, Bazooka can finally smile again

A few weeks ago Bazooka, a sweet ten month-old cat that had suffered extreme cruelty, arrived at the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in Israel. He was in grave condition, his body covered in unsightly sores and burns, and his fur dyed bright pink.

Over the past few weeks Bazooka has been under medical supervision and the Society’s dedicated team of veterinarians have been looking after him with tender loving care. Despite his suffering and pain, he was cooperative throughout his treatments and was found to be a very sociable cat that craves attention and loves being stroked.

As Bazooka got stronger, gained weight, and his sores healed, we started searching for a home for him, with owners that would be able to give him a “pink” and optimistic future, full of love and contented purring. After we made Bazooka’s story public through the media and social networks, Shmulik and Yakir came by the Society’s shelter and decided to adopt him.

Bazooka was neutered, had all his vaccinations and his fur shaved off, and the time came to say goodbye. We wish Bazooka a good and happy life with his new family.

If you come across an animal in distress, please don’t turn a blind eye. Phone the SPCA call center at: *4553.

Bazooka with his new family
Bazooka with his new family

Cat Suffers Severe Abuse

A cat that underwent severe abuse is now under veterinary supervision in the SPCA Clinic

Over and over again we witness appalling cases of abuse and one’s heart goes out to those helpless animals

In response to a call from the District Veterinarian, Dr. Abu Ras, from the Veterinary Department in Taibe, we urgently sent the rescuer, Eyal Gatenu, to bring the cat that had suffered severe abuse to the SPCA Clinic. According to reports, the injured cat was tied by a rope, dragged along the streets and had its fur painted pink. The cat was caught and confiscated by the local Community Police Chief with the help of the Border Police, who took a man suspected of involvement in this cruel act into custody. We hope that the police and the legal system will bring the criminals that perpetrated this abuse to justice.

החתול בזוקה

The cat, who was given the name Bazooka, reached the clinic in very bad condition, suffering from dehydration and deep, infected cuts in the stomach area, on its tail and rectum, apparently as a result of burns. Dr. Lena Algerbeli, an SPCA veterinarian, gave him first aid – analgesics, infusions of liquids and antibiotics and high quality food to help him regain his strength. The following day, under light anesthetic, the cat underwent thorough examination and treatment of the damaged tissue. The diagnosis was that, in addition to the wounds, his is suffering a viral infection and eye infection. At present the cat is under close medical supervision, is being administered antibiotics and ointments and his wounds are being cleaned and sterilized. The doctors are following his progress and in accordance with the pace of his recuperation it will be decided whether to suture some of the wounds. The pink color is slowly diminishing with the help of washes.

Poor Bazooka is slowly recovering and the SPCA staff is pampering him all the while. Despite the abuse that he underwent and the wounds from which he is suffering, he puts his trust in those who are caring for him and we see that he is a friendly and easy-going cat. We all hope that he will get well very quickly and once he is fully recuperated we will be able to sterilize him, give him all the necessary vaccinations and find him a responsible and loving home where he will be able to forget about the trauma and live a happy life.

Under light anesthetics. Bazooka being treated for his wounds and burns
Under light anesthetics. Bazooka being treated for his wounds and burns

We call upon school principals and youth leaders from all over the country to call the SPCA and to strengthen the ties with our Department of Education, which offers educational activities aimed at raising awareness and preventing cases of abuse and neglect of animals.

If you come across an animal in distress, please do not ignore it. Call the SPCA call center at: *4553.


I was orphaned when I was only three months old and I suffered from developmental problems because of a lack of mother's milk. In the SPCA stables they take care of me and I even have an adopted mother - Cheetah - who watches out for me and never leaves me for even a moment

The filly, Shirley, was born on a farm where conditions for rearing her were inappropriate. Her mother was in depleted physical condition, which prevented her from nursing Shirley and caused developmental problems. She reached the SPCA stables when she was three months old, suffering from undernourishment, a weakened pelvic area and hind legs and had a limp. Due to the lack of mother’s milk, she was underweight so was given nutritional supplements and a milk substitute suited to foals.

Shirley on her arrival at the SPCA
Shirley on her arrival at the SPCA

During the last few months Shirley has gained strength and is slowly gaining weight. She underwent professional hoof-trimming and dental filing, and in order to strengthen and rehabilitate the pelvic area and her legs, the stables staff worked with her consistently, taking her for slow, gentle walks on a rope lead. From her first day in the SPCA stables, Shirley was adopted by Cheetah, a mature, eighteen year old mare.

Shirley and Cheetah – never apart
Shirley and Cheetah – never apart

Update: 2.5 years after Shirley started her rehabilitation process, we found for her a farm, and now she enjoys quiet life with other horses.


For long years, I slaved away pulling wagons while my health was neglected. Luckily for me, I reached the SPCA stables, where I am undergoing rehabilitation and getting professional, medical care. In the stables I adopted Shirley, a young orphaned filly

For many years Cheetah, a mature, eighteen year old mare, worked as a slave, pulling heavy wagons and suffering abuse while her medical problems were neglected. She arrived at the SPCA stables with severe wounds and in extremely low physical condition. During her rehabilitation Cheetah was given disinfecting washes, fed nourishing food, had her hoofs trimmed and her teeth filed. Gradually she gained weight under a controlled regimen.

Cheetah undergoing dental filing
Cheetah undergoing dental filing

One month after Cheetah came here to us, a young filly, named Shirley, joined the stables. Amazing Cheetah adopted her and doesn’t leave her for a moment.

Cheetah enjoys a cool, refreshing shower
Cheetah enjoys a cool, refreshing shower
Cheetah and her adopted daughter, Shirley
Cheetah and her adopted daughter, Shirley

Update: In the end of the rehabilitation process Cheetah was adopted by owners of a private horse farm.

Starting Over

After being rehabilitated in the SPCA, following a period of severe abuse, Cora has found a warm home

In her short life, Cora has already suffered severe abuse, had two operations and recovered from illness. Today, at the age of four months, having been rehabilitated in the SPCA, she has been embraced by a loving family that has adopted her and her new life is just beginning!

A couple of months ago, an adorable eight-week old puppy reached the SPCA after being found by children in a cardboard box in the park where she had been abandoned. Even at first glance it was apparent that she was suffering a serious wound in her right eye, and a veterinary examination confirmed fears that the wound was deliberately inflicted by a direct hit or kick to her eye.

The SPCA adoption counselor, Gal Baba, decided to take the mixed-breed puppy under her care and gave her the name Cora (after the word for black in Japanese).

Cora on the day of her arrival at the SPCA
Cora on the day of her arrival at the SPCA

Cora was taken to Dr. Havi Tzarfati, a highly experienced veterinarian in canine eye care, but unfortunately the examination revealed that the eye could not be saved and Cora underwent surgery to remove her eye in the SPCA clinic.

Cora rapidly recovered from surgery and the whole staff in the SPCA took great care of her, giving her a lot of attention and love. She was given the necessary vaccinations, recovered from a virus that had affected her and began to get used to life with one eye.

Cora’s story was posted on the SPCA Facebook page, and our Facebook friends followed the progress of the brave little pup with the mischievous and friendly personality, who enjoys playing with toys and gets along well with other dogs. Upon getting her last vaccination and being spayed, sweet Cora was ready to start a new chapter and to find a loving family to adopt her and give her the good life she deserves.

The Foundling

An orphaned filly and an older mare were rescued from the cycle of suffering

Raising animals requires dedicated care, attention and a lot of love, without which the results can be calamitous. Shirley, a six-month old filly, experienced this personally together with her mother, when their owners did not provide them with appropriate care. The mother, 16 years old, was in an extremely depleted physical state, as a result of which she couldn’t nurse her filly, causing problems in her development.

The mother died three months ago, and Shirley the orphan, who was then a young, three-month-old filly, reached the Horses Home in the SPCA, where horses and donkeys are rehabilitated after suffering neglect and abuse. She was underweight and weak in the pelvis area and hind legs, and, due to a lack of mother’s milk, she needed to gain weight and was started on nutritional supplements and milk substitutes adapted for foals.

Shirley upon her arrival at the SPCA
Shirley upon her arrival at the SPCA

Over the past few months, Shirley has slowly gained weight and strength. She underwent two professional hoof-trimming treatments, and in order to strengthen and rehabilitate her pelvic area and legs, the stable staff is working with her continually, leading her by rope for gentle walks.

Shirley in the SPCA Horses Home
Shirley in the SPCA Horses Home

The one who adopted Shirley and is following her every step, is Cheetah, an eighteen year old mare, who reached the SPCA four months ago, suffering from wounds and in poor physical state herself. During her rehabilitation, Cheetah was given disinfecting washes, fed nutritious food, had her hooves trimmed and has gained weight.

Cheetah - Looking for a warm home
Cheetah – Looking for a warm home

Both the mares, that are inseparable, have to get further vaccinations and worming shots, while Cheetah must have her teeth filed. Now we are looking for reliable adoptive homes with people who have a stable and are experienced in caring for horses. Cheetah can be ridden part of the time while Shirley still needs to be led and helped to recuperate.

The costs of the special foods, vaccinations and treatments that Shirley and Cheetah need, come to thousands of NIS and we are approaching the public to help us rehabilitate them by making donations. Every donation, big or small, will help us to help these two mares.

To contribute, Click here.

Rehabilitation Wing

Four horses that underwent rehabilitation in the SPCA Horses Home are looking for responsible new owners

In the past few weeks, four horses have been admitted to the SPCA Horses Home, where we rehabilitate horses and donkeys that have suffered neglect and abuse at the hands of their owners:

Crembo, is a white, particularly friendly 12 year old local breed horse. He reached us about a month ago in bad condition with signs of chafing on his legs. During the past few weeks he was given Polydine rinses and his condition rapidly improved. He has been neutered and still needs to be vaccinated, dewormed and have professional hoof trimming. He is suitable for light riding and is looking for owners who will care for him with love.


Alpha, a five year old grey, local breed mare, reached us a month and a half ago. She was neglected and in poor condition, since her owners hadn’t taken care of her properly. Since her arrival she has been given special food and nutritional supplements and now has to have her teeth filed, be vaccinated, dewormed and have professional hoof trimming. According to the team, she is a charming horse, easy going and suitable for riding and is looking for owners who will adopt her and continue to feed her appropriately so that she will continue to gain a little more weight and flourish.


Cleopatra, a seven year old, local breed mare, reached our Horses Home about one month ago after her owners were negligent in their care of her. For the past month she has been fed special food and has already gained weight. Now she needs to have her teeth filed, be vaccinated, dewormed and have professional hoof trimming. She is suitable for light riding and soon she will complete the rehabilitation process and will be ready to find new and loving owners.


Maria, a nine year-old, local breed mare, reached us about a year and a half ago, totally exhausted and in very bad physical condition. She suffered from multiple wounds and severe pain. She underwent a long rehabilitation process in our Horses Home and eventually was transferred to a farm that wished to adopt her. A month and a half ago Maria came back to us, after her new owners found it too challenging to take care of her. She had lost a little weight and suffered from a sore in her eye. In recent weeks she was given Polydine washes and nutritional supplements to restore her to good health. She still has to have her hooves trimmed and be dewormed and we hope that soon she will be ready for adoption.

Rehabilitation of the horses and donkeys in the SPCA Horses Home involves much expense for veterinary treatments and quality food. Your generous support will help us to bear the costs of caring for these animals. To contribute, Click here.

For anyone interested in adopting one of these horses or donkeys: The horses that are rehabilitated in our Horses Home need responsible owners who have stables or farms and are experienced in raising horses. The horses are given up for adoption for no charge following a visit by one of our representatives to the site. For further details and enquiries regarding adoption, please contact us at: *4553 or 03-5136500.