September is Spay/Neuter Month, so it’s fitting that the U.S. Postal Service released two pet commemorative stamps dedicated to the Spay/Neuter mission on September 20, 2002. Altering your cats is the kindest thing you can do as a responsible pet owner. Some people, however, may find this one-time procedure expensive. There are many national and local programs that can help, providing free or low-cost spay/neuter services.
- Friends Of Animals
Friends of Animals was founded in 1957, and has been a leader in advocating low-cost altering as the most effective means of solving the pet overpopulation problem. They’ve facilitated more than 2 million spay/neuter procedures. When you contact Friends of Animals, they’ll send you information about their program and a list of participating veterinarians in your area. You send them a check ($55 for a female cat, $40 for a male cat), and they send you back a certificate that you can take to any vet on their list. There are no additional costs at the vet’s office. Contact them by calling (800) 321-PETS or visit the website.
- SPAY USA
SPAY USA provides free or low-cost spay/neuter services around the country. They have more than 950 sterilization programs and clinics nationwide, with approximately 8,000 veterinarians in their network. Their goal is to make spay/neuter services affordable to those who wouldn’t otherwise alter their pets. (Rates vary by region and veterinarian.) By putting pet owners in touch with local veterinarians and spay/neuter programs, more animals can be altered at affordable rates. If no programs exist in a particular area, they help volunteers start them and offer continued support. Call (800) 248-SPAY or visit the website.
- Feline Rescue Network
This network provides a list of worldwide low-cost or free spay/neuter resources for animals. You can search by city, state, country or area code to find the nearest location. For more information, visit the website.
- Fund For Animals
In 1996, Fund for Animals opened the Have-A-Heart Spay & Neuter Clinic, the world’s largest high-volume, low-cost spay/neuter clinic. In its first four years, the Manhattan clinic provided spay/neuter at a discount to more than 35,000 dogs and cats living in low-income families. The surgery is done at their facility, and costs $25 for cats. If you don’t live in New York, the Fund for Animals’ Web site is a great link to other spay/neuter resources nationwide. Call (212) 977-6877 or visit the website.
- Local Resources
Contact your local animal shelters and veterinarians, because they may be aware of low-cost spay/neuter programs right in your area. Please be responsible for your pet. The result can be a world where every animal has a loving home. Spaying and neutering is the only way to make this dream become a reality.