The South Canterbury SPCA was formed in April 1910 and became an incorporated society in September 1936. The South Canterbury SPCA Inc. is run by a voluntary committee. It was originally known as the Timaru SPCA but later changed its name to South Canterbury SPCA.

The work of the local society was focused on upholding the animal welfare laws in South Canterbury and educating the public by using the services of a part-time inspector and several honorary inspectors.

Funding of the Society was always an issue and by 1932 the South Canterbury Society was on shaky grounds financially but the committee of the day knew that the Society must be kept in existence at all costs.

Over the next 30 years local funds accumulated with bequests being received from generous supporters and also local fundraising efforts of the committee.  By late 1960 the current property was purchased at Hedley Road, Seadown, Timaru. A house was built on the property along with one kennel block. The Animal Home was officially opened on 22 April 1961. The local society also took over the Council work of hydatids control, dog registration and stray dog nuisance at this time and employed it's first full time officer in December 1960. The work of the local society also now included providing boarding for owners of cats and dogs - thus providing another source of income. 

The dog control work was taken back over by the local  Council in 1996 and this has seen our local society being able to focus solely on animal welfare work and the demands of running an animal home for animals in need.  Since 1961  there has been alot of new building development at the Animal Home. Presently one full time Manager/Inspector is employed along with one part-time employee. Several other staff are employed at busy times and volunteers are used on a daily basis to help run the Animal Home and Boarding Facilities.  

The South Canterbury SPCA Inc. is responsible for animal welfare work within the South Canterbury region reaching from the Rangitata River to the Wataki River and inland to Twizel.  Education of the public is an important aspect of our role in South Canterbury along with providing an animal home for injured, sick and homeless animals. We  endeavour to place as many animals into new homes as possible each year.