When I meet up with all the volunteers at the shelter or talk to them via Facebook or on the phone I think of how grateful I am for all the activity and help with the never ending need for homes. But with every rescue, there’s a cost. One that is much greater than what would have cost to prevent the birth of that unwanted pet in the first place.
And yet, with all this great activity and economy, we still can’t seem to make the change and make it right for our state’s unwanted animals. Still about 50% of the pets in our state are euthanized.
Why? Because not enough money is put toward spay and neuter. The need for major volunteer effort and time, donations and care by rescues will never diminish without more concern for the solution.
The average cost to save a dog is anywhere from $150-600, depending on the rescue’s infrastructure and the pet’s needs. Our average cost to spay or neuter a dog is $125 and that’s on the high end. If we were a low-cost spay/neuter facility, that number would be less.
In addition to increasing access to low-cost spay/neuter services for low-income pet owners, the solution is also in increasing access to low-cost veterinary services. Animal Humane New Mexico’s clinic does just that. In the past two years, they have also been at the Valencia Shelter with low-cost microchip and vaccines for low-income residents. These efforts keep people and their pets together. I will write more about these types of groups and services in the future as they are key to making change in our state.
If you don’t know about the current spay/neuter bill, this is also a fantastic opportunity for our state’s unwanted pets. This bill would dramatically increase funding for spay/neuter and will be reintroduced in the 2020 session in January. To support the bill, please contact your representatives and let them know you care about the other 50%. For more information on the bill, please visit Animal Protection Voters www.apvnm.org website and join “New Mexico Supporters of a State Low-Cost Spay/Neuter Program’s” Facebook page.