No More Homeless Pets

by Karla Kloempken

To the Editor,

Those of us who are involved with animal rescue and adoption in Grays Harbor, Mason, and Pacific counties know that it truly takes a village to work toward our common goal of "No More Homeless Pets!" February is National Spay-Neuter Awareness Month and a perfect time to showcase the statistics of how many pets and free-roaming animals were altered in 2015 and give thanks for the tireless efforts of these groups and volunteers.
The ladies doing Trap Neuter Return (TNR) were very busy last year. Vivian spayed or neutered 435 cats. Donna and Vicki of East County (Montesano, Elma and McCleary) spayed or neutered 325 cats. TNR really does work! North West Spay Neuter Center transported 408 animals in their acclimatized truck for low cost spay and neuter. Local shelters were not only busy adopting out animals and meeting their medical needs; they were doing their share of spaying and neutering. PAWS of Grays Harbor spayed or neutered 555 dogs and cats. North Beach PAWS, which has two very successful spay and neuter clinics each spring and each fall every year, altered 131 dogs and 232 cats. Harbor Association of Volunteers for Animals (HAVA) has several spay neuter programs, including low income, community cat TNR, and adoption programs. During 2015, they have spayed or neutered approximately 440 animals. Grays Harbor Rescue altered 50 dogs and 10 cats. Mason County (Shelton) was just as busy as we were. Norma and volunteers at Mason County Kitten Rescue spayed or neutered 800 cats last year. That's over 3380 animals, total!

By no means do these statistics mean we can relax in our efforts to educate and offer financial assistance through spay-neuter programs and feral/community cat TNR efforts. We know first-hand that spay and neuter programs work. Shelters outside our area who have had spay and neuter programs in their communities for at least 5 years frequently reach out to our local shelters for adoptable animals! In a nutshell, they don't have enough adoptable animals to meet demand!

If your pet is in need of spay or neuter, please contact your veterinarian to schedule ASAP! If you require financial assistance, please call a rescue or shelter and let them help you and your pet. We still have a lot of work to do. Together we can prevent unwanted litters of kittens and puppies. Thank-you for a successful 2015! Let's make 2016 the best year ever for animals!

Karla Kloempken