It was always in the backs of our minds.
We knew that while we were saving thousands of pets every year, the pet overpopulation crisis still raged on. Tens of thousands of pets would still be euthanized…simply because they had nowhere to go.
This is the sad reality that, perhaps, too many have come to accept. We, too, could maintain the status quo, always hoping to reverse the tide of unwanted animals…one pet at a time…through adoption alone.
Or, we could do much more. And if you know Animal Friends, you know that we are always thinking big.
Three years ago, Animal Friends made a promise. We pledged to dramatically expand our low-cost spay and neuter program.
We stated a goal: to spay and neuter 24,000 pets in just 3 years.
From 4,000 spays in 2008 to at least double that in 2009…how could it be done?
First, we ramped up a three-part program.
- We underwrote surgeries at vets’ offices throughout the community, ensuring that low-income pet owners could visit a trusted local vet to have their pet altered.
- We expanded our in-house clinics, bringing even more pets in our region to Animal Friends for high-quality, low-cost spay/neuter surgeries.
- Then, we unveiled our secret weapon: a mobile spay/neuter clinic. Animal Friends’ Mobile Resource Center, a full-service operating room on wheels, empowered us to bring our services to the pets who would never otherwise be altered.
We spayed and neutered pets of low-income owners, pets at shelters with no spay/neuter programs, feral cats and pets in rural areas with no access to affordable surgeries. We offered special pricing for Pit Bulls, a kind of dog that is sadly overbred and suffers the worst fate in shelters.
We knew we couldn’t meet our goal alone. So we strengthened ties with partner organizations and even the City of Pittsburgh. We worked within communities to hold mass surgery days, sometimes altering more than 30 animals at a time.
By October, 2011, we had not only fulfilled our promise. We exceeded our goal! Animal Friends altered more than 24,000 pets in just three years!
That brings us to an even more astounding total. Since its inception in 1993, Animal Friends’ Low-Cost Spay/ Neuter Program has spayed or neutered nearly 100,000 pets!
While we’re proud of our achievement, we know there’s still much more work to be done. We still dream of a day when pets are no longer needlessly euthanized in Southwestern Pennsylvania.
So we will continue to bring affordable, high-quality surgeries to the pets in our region. And we’re prepared to step up our efforts even more. We’re gearing up to expand our programming yet again!
Please help Animal Friends celebrate this achievement. Sponsor a spay today! Click here to make your donation now! And together, we can drive pet overpopulation out of Southwestern Pennsylvania…for good.