NORFOLK, Va. (WAVY) — The Norfolk SPCA is asking for donations after experiencing a holiday filled with challenges as they struggled to maintain their aging facility.

During the Christmas weekend, a pipe burst above the boiler and caused the shelter to lose access to water and heat in the dog kennels.

When the team tried to reengage the boiler, they encountered significant issues that required the Norfolk Fire and Rescue Department to conduct a smoke investigation.

All of the animals at the shelter are safe and the water has since been restored. The boiler, which is responsible for heating the dog kennel floors and some water supplies, is expected to be repaired in the coming days.

“We are in the process of still securing our quotation from our contractor. We are hoping to have something hopefully by the end of the week,” Tammy Lindquist, Norfolk SPCA Community Engagement Manager, said. “It was because of the cold temperatures, and our boiler malfunctioned too.”

In a post on social media, the Norfolk SPCA extended their gratitude to their staff, volunteers, good samaritans (Rusty and John), the Norfolk Public Works Department, and the Norfolk Fire and Rescue Department for their assistance in handling this crisis.

“We appreciate so much everything everyone is doing,” she said. “We have a very caring and dedicated group that works for us here.”

In the coming days, the shelter is in urgent need of blankets and bath towels to keep the animals warm and comfortable.

“Blankets. We need towels. We need twin-size comforters,” Lindquist said.

Donations can be dropped off at the front door entrance (916 Ballentine Blvd) 24/7. Lindquist said adopting a dog also helps because they are over capacity.

“That’s one thing we really need to stress,” she said.

To make a donation, visit

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