From an email:
My name is Megan, and I have lived in South Seminole Heights for about a year and a half. As I walk or drive around this area and other parts of Seminole Heights, I notice a large number of cats roaming yards and streets. Many of them seem to be friendly, healthy and content with being outside, and are not bothering anything. The concern I have is making sure these cats are spayed or neutered. If they are roaming the neighborhood and are not fixed, there is a very good chance they are reproducing and having babies that are often unwanted.
Spay/neuter has many benefits for animals, owners and the community:
Good for your pet:
- Helps dogs and cats live longer, healthier lives (spayed or neutered pets live an average of 2 - 3 years longer than those who are not)
- Eliminates or reduces the risk of a number of health problems that are difficult or expensive to treat, including several different kinds of cancer
Good for you:
- Makes pets less aggressive, more affectionate companions
- Decreases or eliminates spraying or marking
- Eliminates the heat cycle in females, getting rid of crying and other neurotic behavior
- Makes pets less likely to roam the neighborhood, run away or get into fights
Good for the community:
- Last year, just under 30,000 dogs and cats were euthanized in local shelters because there were not enough homes for them. This is equal to over 70% of the animals brought into shelters.
- The county spends millions each year to control unwanted animals.
It's easy to get your pet fixed, and not as expensive as you might think. There is a low cost clinic called the ACT Clinic, located at 1719 W. Lemon Street in Tampa. Their prices start at $40 for cats. They do a really good job using high quality equipment and veterinarians, and care a lot about your pet. For more information, visit: www.actampa.org or call 813-250-3900. They also have a blog: www.actampa.wordpress.com.
If you are feeding stray, free-roaming cats that are not yours, you can get them fixed as well. These cats, commonly known as ferals, were abandoned by a previous owner or were born outside and have reverted to the wild state. Many of them may seem unfriendly because they will not allow you to pet them. Feral cat populations are controlled by a process called Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) where they are fixed and then returned to their original surroundings. The ACT Clinic has a special called "Trapper Tuesday" starting in July that will allow you to trap ferals and get them fixed for $10. You can learn more about ferals and TNR at: www.alleycat.org.
Feel free to email me with any questions you might have about spay/neuter of feral cats.
Monday, June 30, 2008
From an email: