Giving Kudos to Canines

Serena's Documentary: 'Paw Prints'

For the sixth year, the SPCA will partner with Serena's owner, Steve Briggs, to recognize other pets that are making amazing contributions in our community, and will name one incredible pet "Serena's Star 2019.” Serena was rescued from a shelter, days before facing euthanasia due to space limitations, to lead a life delivering comfort to challenged children, wounded veterans, and shattered souls with intuitive compassion. We are looking for a local animal that has made a similar, extraordinary contribution in our community.

This year, we have decided to choose a winner in two categories: Personal Pet and Certified Pet. Nominees should apply as a personal pet if you are nominating a pet that has made an amazing contribution to you own or another’s life. For example, helped you personally through a difficult time, medical condition or life change. Please apply as a certified pet for military, police, search & rescue, detection and/or certified therapy animals.

The selected award recipients (pet and owner) will be honored during a ceremony on Sunday,

March 31st at the SPCA Albrecht Center. The winner in each category will also receive a $500 prize, sponsored by the Briggs family, plus a framed photo, which will be displayed in our facility for 2019.

Last year’s winner was Jose and his human coworker, Sergeant John Gray with Richmond County Sheriff’s Office. Jose led an inspiring life as an Armed Service K-9, who completed three tours in Afghanistan. He was also an Active Service K-9 for the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office and was re-certified in a national Explosive K-9 Certification at the modest age of ten. Jose and Sergeant John Gray recently began their retired lives together, but often reminisce about the incredible careers and experiences they shared.

We’d love to hear your own pet’s extraordinary story! Online nomination forms are available at or print and mail a nomination form to Attn: Claire R. Grimes; SPCA Albrecht Center; 199 Willow Run Road; Aiken, SC 29801. Deadline for applications will be March 11, 2019. Please send a photo (will not be returned) with the application of the incredible pet you chose to nominate.

If you have questions, please call Claire R. Grimes, Development Director at 803-648-6863 or email her at For more information on Serena’s story, visit

Claire Grimes is the SPCA Albrecht Center’s Development Director. She is an Aiken native, but spent some college years in Charleston, interning with Charleston Animal Society. She is excited to be working in animal welfare in her hometown and is proud of the community efforts to better the lives of Aiken’s animals. Her family includes her husband, Logan, a SPCA adopted black lab, Ozzy, a SPCA adopted Siamese mix, Luna, and Claire’s first love, Anakin, a 17-pound rescued Maine Coon mix.

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The SPCA Albrecht Center for Animal Welfare is a

tax-exempt 501(C)(3) nonprofit organization.

EIN: 57-0329782

  199 Willow Run Road  Aiken, SC 29801      Shelter: (803) 648-6863    Vet Care: (803) 648-6864

Copyright 2014     SPCA Albrecht Center for Animal Welfare      All rights reserved