ITHACA, N.Y. — An Ithaca woman’s annual holiday tradition is unlike most people’s. She packs her vehicle with about as much canned dog food as she can, drives it to the SPCA of Tompkins County, and unloads the months supply of food.

“Let’s hope that this inspires others as well,” said Jutta Locker. “The animals — they need us.”

Jutta Locker with the help of her daughter Jessi Locker, has been donating the large haul of canned for about 10 years. But prior to making the personal donations, she organized donation drives at her job for the SPCA.

She estimates that she’s donated to the organization for about 40 years.

Helping her get the most bang for her buck is Lilley’s Tack & Feed in Dryden and Ithaca Grain and Pet Supply, who cut her deals to send her packing with the most canned food possible.

Executive Director Jim Bouderau said Locker’s donation is the biggest item-donation from a individual nearly all year. The only thing that comes close to getting as many donated goods is when companies host donation drives.

This year’s haul, he said, will last the shelter for about four months.

The SPCA’s donation needs are located on the organization’s website and listed in order of the facility’s most pressing current need.
Below are photos of Thursday morning’s canned food drop-off. All photos by Jolene Almendarez/The Ithaca Voice.