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East Bay SPCA offers free spay/neuter surgeries Feb. 28

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The East Bay SPCA will perform up to 100 free spay and neuter surgeries for pit bulls, Chihuahuas and cats on Tuesday, February 28, 2012 to commemorate World Spay Day and Spay/Neuter Awareness Month. The annual marathon campaign promotes spay/neuter surgery as a proven, effective means of saving animals’ lives. The East Bay SPCA will offer the free spay and neuter surgeries to pets belonging to low-income families living in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties.

EBSPCA offers regular affordable spay and neuter services to privately owned pets Tuesday through Friday at its two Spay/Neuter Centers in Dublin and Oakland. On any given day, as many as 60 dogs and cats are spayed or neutered. But for many families still struggling in a down economy, any amount they have to pay to have their pet altered is too costly.

“For many low-income families, even our regular discounted prices are still more than they can afford. We want to set aside one day on World Spay Day to help these families get their pit bulls, Chihuahuas and cats fixed for free,” says Allison Lindquist, EBSPCA’s executive director.

Lindquist says the number of pit bulls and Chihuahuas entering Bay Area shelters has increased dramatically in the past few years as the breed’s popularity has grown. “More than half of all dogs entering many Bay Area shelters are Chihuahuas and Chihuahua mixes or pit bulls and pit bull mixes. Sadly, an increasing number of adult cats are also being surrendered to shelters. Spaying and neutering is the only way to prevent more of these unwanted animals from entering shelters.”

Spaying and neutering also helps keep dogs and cats healthy by reducing or eliminating the possibility of certain cancers. The surgery also eliminates the problems and risks associated with pregnancy and birth, particularly in Chihuahuas who often have trouble giving birth. And, a neutered dog or cat is less likely to spray and mark his territory or roam away from home, which will keep him safe from becoming lost or hit by a car.

The free spay and neuter surgeries will be performed February 28th at the EBSPCA’s Oakland Spay/Neuter Surgery Center located at 410 Hegenberger Loop in Oakland, and at the EBSPCA’s Tri-Valley Spay/Neuter Surgery Center located at 4651 Gleason Drive in Dublin. All spay and neuter surgeries will include free vaccinations (regularly $15 to $25 each), free pain medication and an e-collar. Pet owners can also opt to have an identification microchip implanted in their pet for just $10 (regular price is $30).

To qualify for the free spay/neuter surgery for their pet (s) on February 28, individuals must be on some documented form of government assistance such as food stamps, WIC, disability or unemployment.

Other Bay Area shelters offering affordable spay and neuter surgery or special pricing in February include: Berkeley East-Bay Humane Society, Contra Costa Animal Services, Humane Society Silicon Valley, Marin Humane Society, Peninsula Humane Society & SPCA, San Francisco SPCA, San Jose Animal Care & Services, Silicon Valley Animal Control Authority, and Tony La Russa’s Animal Rescue Foundation. Dates and number of surgeries available varies by participating organization. Appointments must be made in advance. Each shelter has its own intake requirements, number of surgery slots and surgery date(s). For more information and to schedule an appointment, please contact the shelter in your area in your area.

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