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High Country SPCA: Deadline for Affordable Spay/Neuter Clinic is April 18

SPONSORED CONTENT – The High Country Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA) is a non-profit, volunteer-driven organization protecting animals that have been subjected to neglect or abandonment. The organization’s upcoming affordable spay/neuter clinic is taking place on April 28.

What is This Clinic?

This spay/neuter clinic is specifically designed for low-income residents in the Foothills area. This initiative aims to provide accessible spay and neuter surgeries for cats and dogs, reinforcing the importance of responsible pet ownership.

Who is Eligible?

The program targets residents of the Foothills, with a particular focus on those living in Turner Valley, Black Diamond, Longview, and Millarville. To qualify, applicants must be at least 18 years old and reside within the specified areas. They also must have a family household annual income that does not exceed 100% of the Statistics Canada Low Income Cut-Offs (LICO) and will be asked to provide proof of income that shows this.

It's important to note that this program is not available to breeders and excludes unhealthy or contagious animals, along with nursing cats and dogs.

Veterinarian care unrelated to the surgery and the cost of an Elizabethan Collar are not covered under this program.

Applicants must provide a copy of one of the following documents alongside their application:

  • Canada Revenue Agency 2022 Notice of Assessment for all family members 18 years and above residing at the same address.
  • Assured Income for the Severely Handicapped benefits card (current and not expired).
  • Alberta Works: Income Support Health Benefits Card (current and not expired).
  • Letter from a Registered Social Worker, if no other documents are available, outlining the family income.

What is involved?

Those who qualify for the program can look forward to a comprehensive package that includes:

  • Spay or neuter surgery for cats and dogs.
  • Post-operative pain medication.
  • Additional post-operative medication at the veterinarian’s discretion.
  • A tattoo marking the procedure.
  • Vaccinations, if the pet is not up to date.

How to Apply

Application forms are available at Diamond Valley Veterinary Clinic.

Eligible residents are encouraged to submit their completed paperwork to either the High Country SPCA via email at [email protected] or to the Diamond Valley Veterinary Clinic at [email protected]. We encourage everyone interested to apply, if you are over the LICO, give a short explanation and if we have extra room available and we will consider your application. Applications can also be dropped off directly at the Diamond Valley Veterinary Clinic located at 117 Sunset Blvd SE, Turner Valley. The deadline for application submission is April 18, 2024.

Benefits of Spaying or Neutering Your Pet

When it comes to responsible pet ownership, one of the most crucial decisions you can make is to spay or neuter your pets.

For female pets, spaying offers a longer and healthier life. It significantly reduces the risk of uterine infections and breast cancer, diseases that claim the lives of a large percentage of unspayed dogs and cats. The protective benefits are even greater when the procedure is done before the pet experiences her first heat.

Male pets are not left out of the health benefits either. Neutering eliminates the risk of testicular cancer and provides major health benefits that contribute to a longer, healthier life.

Spaying and neutering also bring about positive behavioral changes in pets. Female pets will no longer go into heat, which means an end to the cycles of yowling and frequent, sometimes messy urination. Male pets, on the other hand, will be less inclined to roam away from home in search of a mate. This reduces their risk of getting lost, becoming involved in traffic accidents, or engaging in fights with other males.

A common myth surrounding spaying and neutering is that it causes pets to become overweight. However, this is not true. Weight gain is primarily the result of lack of exercise and overfeeding. By maintaining a healthy diet and regular exercise routine, your pet will stay fit and healthy regardless of being spayed or neutered.

Spaying and neutering have substantial benefits for the community. Stray animals can cause problems, including preying on wildlife, causing car accidents, and frightening children. Every year, far too many cats and dogs are euthanized or suffer as strays due to unplanned litters that could have been prevented.

More about High Country SPCA

Susanne John, President of High Country SPCA, says, "Every animal deserves a chance at happiness, a warm bed, and a loving hand to hold. That's what we strive to provide.”

With no physical facility to call home, the High Country SPCA relies heavily on the generosity and willingness of foster caregivers. These temporary homes become sanctuaries where animals can recuperate, learn to trust again, and wait for their chance to be part of a family. Despite the unwavering commitment of existing foster networks, the need for more foster homes is constant, reflecting the ever-present challenge of animal homelessness and distress.

The journey from rescue to rehoming has some obstacles, such as the medical treatment many of these animals desperately require. Here, the High Country SPCA has found invaluable allies in Diamond Valley Veterinary Clinic. The clinic's veterinarians, Dr. Lindsey Hein and Dr. Gregor Hein, have embraced the cause, offering their expertise and care to animals in distress. Their involvement, particularly in the affordable spay/neuter program initiated by Dr. Wayne Steiger and Susanne John, represents a cornerstone of the SPCA's efforts to manage and reduce animal overpopulation.

"The support from Diamond Valley Veterinary Clinic has been nothing short of miraculous. Their dedication to our cause has enabled us to save countless lives and offer a new beginning to animals in need," John notes.

Community involvement is another pillar upon which the High Country SPCA stands. Donations, whether financial or material, are the lifeblood that keeps this cause moving forward. The community's generosity, coupled with the tireless work of volunteers, fuels the organization's ability to continue its mission.

For those considering expanding their family with a furry friend, or those looking to open their homes to foster animals, the High Country SPCA encourages a visit to their Facebook page, where profiles of animals awaiting adoption are regularly updated.

John extends a heartfelt invitation to the community, "Join us in our mission. Whether through fostering, volunteering, donating, or adopting, your support makes a world of difference. Together, we can give these animals the second chance they deserve."

Learn more on Facebook today.

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