Los Angeles animal foundation offering $5 for each cat you get spayed or neutered
Kittens are seen at the spcaLA P.D. Pitchford Companion Animal Village & Education Center in Long Beach, Calif on June 25, 2012. / AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes
(CBS News) Do you keep putting off getting your cat spayed or neutered? A Los Angeles-based nonprofit animal foundation is making it hard to keep that task off your to-do list by offering a monetary incentive to bring your feline in.
Found Animals is offering $5 for each cat a person brings in to get spayed or neutered at two of their partner locations, The Spay Neuter Project Los Angeles (SNP LA) or Spay 4 LA, as part of their "Cash for Cats" campaign. The procedure will be provided for free, granted the person lives in the certain zip codes: 91605, 91402, 91405, 90003 and 90037. If a person lives outside the zone, Found Animals will offer the surgery for a low cost either at those locations or find a place nearby the person's home.
"We're hoping this will encourage people to bring their cats in," Jessica Jeurink, public relations and events specialist for Found Animals Foundatiom, told CBSNews.com.
Jeurink said the specific zip codes were chosen because they have some of the highest shelter intakes in Los Angeles County. As for the fear that people would just round up cats on the street that didn't belong to them, Jeurink assured that the staff would try to make sure the person did indeed own the pet.
"We're not going to turn anyway if they don't have their license with them, but if someone comes in with 20 cats it's going to raise a red flag," she said.
Without commenting on this specific program, the Animal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) said they applaud any effort to encourage spaying and neutering of pets.
"Any program that enables pet owners to spay or neuter their pets at a low cost is one that I'm in favor of!" Aimee Christian, vice president of the spay/neuter operations at ASPCA, told CBSNews.com.
Christian explained that spaying or neutering helps curb the pet population. Especially with so many pets being euthanized all over the country for lack of space in animal shelters, getting the procedure done can help prevent unwanted pets. Although pet owners may want to have a puppy or a kitten that looks like their pet, Christian said they sometimes don't realize the consequences.
"Most people don't realize that they're going to have a hard time selling all of them," she explained. "Then, they get stuck with eight puppies they have to take care of -- and they make a big mess."
CBS Los Angeles reported that a single pair of unsterilized cats and their kittens can produce anywhere from 100 to 5,000 kittens in their lifetime. About 87,000 cats are dropped off at Los Angeles-area shelters annually. According to Christian, pitbulls and all kinds of cats are the most likely to show up at shelters and the least likely to get adopted.
Neutering and spaying can also provide a number of health benefits, including eliminating many cancers and helping curb the effects of the heat cycle. Christian added that they procedure can be done when the pet reaches two months or two pounds, and it has the most health benefits if they come in before their first heat cycle.
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