Statewide Spay & Neuter Program Completes More Than 12,000 Procedures in Less Than 3 Years - Southern Maryland Headline News

Statewide Spay & Neuter Program Completes More Than 12,000 Procedures in Less Than 3 Years

ANNAPOLIS (Oct. 11, 2016)—The Maryland Department of Agriculture's Statewide Spay and Neuter Program has funded projects that have so far completed 12,088 procedures since the program began in 2014.

"Our goal is to reduce intake and euthanasia of cats and dogs in Maryland animal shelters," said Program Coordinator Jane Mallory. "Every spay and neuter procedure reduces the risk of a dog or cat having an unwanted litter that may end up in a county shelter. We have been very impressed by the quality of applications we receive and the terrific work the grantees have been able to do."

The program was created by the General Assembly in 2013 (FY 2014) to reduce the number of unwanted cats and dogs euthanized in shelters across the state. The program distributes competitive grants to local governments and animal welfare organizations that promote and provide free spay and neuter services to pets of low income Marylanders and to colonies of feral cats. The program distributed its first round of grants in FY 2015.

Funding for this program comes from fees paid by pet food companies who register to sell their products in Maryland.

To date, the program has provided $1.8 million in grants for 58 projects that provide free surgeries to pets and feral cats. Of those, 43 projects provide free spay and neuter services to pet cats and dogs of low income Marylanders, and 15 focus on fixing community cats in feral cat colonies.

To date, 13 projects are completed but 46 are either ongoing or about to start up. In addition, the program has provided funds to help organizations purchase equipment to expand the capacity of a low cost spay and neuter clinic in Anne Arundel County and to equip new clinics in Allegany and Cecil counties.

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