The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

June 25, 2013

Humane society lines up low-cost clinic

By Amy Kent Herald Staff Writer
The Clinton Herald

---- — CLINTON — Television personality Bob Barker ended every episode of the Price is Right with his coined phrase: "Help control the pet population. Have your pets spayed or neutered."

In keeping with the message of overpopulation prevention, the Clinton Humane Society is doing its part to advocate the same.

On June 27 and July 19 the Humane Society will sponsor a low-cost spay and neuter clinic with One Spay at a Time, an organization based in Buffalo.

Owner and Operator of One Spay at a Time, Dr. Jeanne Hedges, has more than six years experience with spaying and neutering and seven years of private veterinary practice.

"My whole purpose with this mobile clinic is to make (spaying and neutering) affordable. For a lot of people, the cost is a major reason why they don't do it," Hedges said.

The cost to spay a cat at a veterinary clinic can range anywhere from $60 to $110. To neuter a cat the total can average between $30 to $90.

One Spay at a Time is offering the procedures for cats, weighing at least 3 pounds, at $50 for spaying and $25 for neutering.

According to Hedges, mobile clinics usually get a bad reputation for offering the procedures at such a low cost, but she is able to do so because of her low overhead.

"I usually get to work in a free space and I rely heavily on volunteers at those places," Hedges said.

Sandi Bartels, operations manager with the Clinton Humane Society, is thrilled to be a part of the spay and neuter mobile clinic because of the benefits it provides the animals and the community.

"If people spay and neuter their pets, it reduces the number of strays that we receive and have to euthanize," Bartels said.

Spaying and neutering not only reduces the population of cats and dogs, but it also has a number of health benefits as well.

For female dogs and cats the likelihood of getting breast cancer goes up significantly after each heat cycle. If they are spayed before the first cycle, it reduces that chance exponentially.

Neutering is more of an emotional and behavioral factor for dogs and cats. Unfixed male dogs and cats tend to be more aggressive and have a higher tendency to roam in search of a mate.

The June 27 clinic is fully booked but the Clinton Humane Society is taking appointments for July 19.

The humane society is encouraging pet owners to take advantage of the low-cost clinic and to advocate for the prevention of animal overpopulation.