The Importance of Spay/Neuter

If you ever needed a reason to spay and neuter your animals….I hope this is it.

These two kittens are the product of not spaying a cat. They are just two of 12 newborns that we are currently caring for at our shelter. These two are special though, because unlike the 10 other kittens that arrived with their mother, these two were found in a dumpster.

One thing we realize in Animal Rescue, is that there is no shortage of  dogs and cats, and free animals are easy to come by. Just look around you: bulletin boards, newspaper classifieds, radio swap & shops and internet buy & sell groups are loaded with advertisements for free animals. Unfortunately there aren’t homes for all of them, and some unlucky puppies and kittens end up tossed in a dumpster or left at a landfill to die.

With every pet adopted out at MLDHS, we ensure it is up to date on vaccinations, dewormed, microchipped (dogs), and most importantly, that they are spayed and neutered. All of this costs money, which we work hard to fundraise for.  We have been fortunate to have a great relationship with our local vets who subsidize the vet care costs, so we are able to keep our adoption fees low, possibly the lowest in the province.

As a Humane Society we know the importance of spaying and neutering, but are also aware of the fact that not everyone can afford to have the procedure done. In 2005 we partnered with the Town of Meadow Lake to offer a low cost spay and neuter program. Unfortunately there wasn’t a great turn out, but this could have been due to a number of factors, such as lack of advertising or the fact that MLDHS wasn’t as well known back then as it is today. There is always the potential for a similar program in the future, but we need the support of the public and to know that the service will be utilized.

A couple of years ago we introduced a Feral Cat Catch and Release program to combat overpopulation in feral cat colonies. Wild cats are humanely trapped, spayed/neutered, and then released so they can continue their job as rodent control for the area, without the numbers of offspring getting out of control.

The following photos are a sobering reminder of how animal overpopulation is a slippery slope. It only takes 2 unfixed animals to start the process.

All of this can be prevented by spaying and neutering your pets.

A difficult thing that all shelters have to deal with is euthanasia. Because of the sad fact that there aren’t enough homes for all of the unwanted animals in the world, countless numbers of companion animals are euthanized all over the world each year due to lack of space. It’s almost as if shelters have a revolving door; for every animal adopted, there are 2 more to take its place, or in the case of kittens, 12 more. The supply of animals far outweighs the demand, yet they are still being bred.

For the month of August we are offering all cats and kittens for FREE, which still includes all vet work. Rather than euthanize  perfectly happy and healthy cats we want to give them away to approved homes.

So the next time you think it’s a good idea to experience the “miracle of life” and let your pet have a litter, or you get a free puppy or kitten and have no plans to spay/neuter….don’t think of those kittens pictured above, they’re the lucky ones. Think of the ones that weren’t rescued. Then contact your local vet and make an appointment to have your pet(s) fixed!

And if you are looking to welcome a new furry companion into your home, don’t breed or buy:

ADOPT!

For more information on the benefits of spay/neuter please read the ASPCA’s article The Top Ten Reasons to Spay/Neuter.

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