Stray and unwanted dogs and cats are a huge problem in Vinita, but a new program is offering a realistic solution to address the stray overpopulation.
The Peaceful Animal Adoption Shelter of Vinita is now offering a low-cost spay and neuter program for low income owners who qualify.
The Pet Overpopulation Program is funded by a grant from the Flint Family Foundation in an effort to decrease the numbers of strays and unwanted pets.
“We have heard heartfelt stories from people who could not afford the cost of spaying or neutering their beloved pets,” said PAAS executive director Kay Stout.
“No one likes to see an animal suffer, but many people can’t afford to get their beloved pets fixed. This program improves the life of your pet and prevents unwanted litters. It really makes a difference in your community. There is a solution – it’s spaying and neutering – and it’s now affordable to those who qualify,” Stout said.
The cost for qualifying owners is just $10 per animal, with a limit of two animals per owner.
To qualify, owners must have proof of low income, including:
- A Medicaid card
- A Social Security award letter
- An Electronic Balance Transfer (EBT) card, which verifies eligibility in the Food Stamp program; Women’s, Infants and Children (WIC); Temporary Assistance for needy Families (TANF); or day care assistance programs.
Enrollment is easy: just go by PAAS, located at 628 S. Wilson Street in Vinita, and fill out a short form. PAAS is open Monday through Friday, from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.
You can also download this Spay-Neuter Form and fill it out and bring it in to PAAS.
Stout thanked local veterinarians for their tremendous support.
“Our local veterinarians have been fantastic,” Stout said, which includes Dr. Danny Lankford, Cross 7 veterinary Clinic, Countryside Animal Hospital and South Grand Lake Veterinary Clinic.
Stout is also applying for a grant to provide a mobile clinic that provides spay/neuter services for cats.
PAAS has had remarkable success since it first opened, adopting 792 dogs to their “forever” homes, mostly in Colorado through a partnership with the Denver Dumb Friends League.
Adopting stray and unwanted dogs is a short-term solution to the overpopulation of strays, but neutering and spaying is the best long-term solution, Stout said.
And while a strong market for adoptable dogs exists, adopting out cats is a different matter as the adoption market is very small.
“There is still an ongoing cat challenge. Cats make great pets and are extremely low maintenance,” Stout said.
Anyone wanting to adopt a dog or cat, or to inquire about the spay-neuter program, can contact PAAS at (918) 256-7227.