Why We Do It
Cat overpopulation is a serious issue.
Thousands of unwanted, homeless kittens are born each year. Most are condemned to suffer — susceptible to illness and injuries, easy prey for predators, and victims of unimaginable cruelty from humans. If they do survive, within six months they attain maturity and begin having their own kittens, continuing this vicious cycle. Some calculations predict that one unaltered female cat can lead to as many as 420,000 cats in just seven years! When cat populations increase so dramatically and so quickly, people often become overwhelmed, desperate, and sometimes resentful toward these animals. Residents often resort to inhumane tactics to solve the problem of cat overpopulation. Effective, easily available, and low-cost feline sterilization is the key to controlling overpopulation and the associated animal abuse and neglect. Over the past 6 years, we have provided more than 7,500 sterilization surgeries to animals in our community to prevent pet overpopulation and the animal cruelty. Even using the lowest predictions available and only using half as females, we have prevented millions of homeless cats from being born in our community and the associated suffering, and we have offset community costs over the next ten years. In 2020 alone, we provided a total of 673 spays and 543 neuters.
In 2020, the approach of the Pet Compassion Centers pivoted from merely providing funding for spays/neuters to supporting the local shelters with veterinary care, spay/neuter surgeries, and community program development. The Pet Compassion Centers has been operating as a nonprofit veterinary clinic since receiving our premise permit. In 2021, we spayed/neutered and provided essential veterinary care to over 2,000 cats from our small municipal shelters in the tri-state area that otherwise would not have veterinary support. Our spay/neuter veterinarian has ASPCA High Quality/High Volume Training. In addition, our partnerships with the GreaterGood, RescueBank, and Wings of Rescue have resulted in thousands of pounds of pet food being available to deserving shelters and rescues. Since the start of the COVID pandemic, we have leveraged those partnerships to transport over 3,000 cats and a few hundred dogs to areas where the demand is greater and they will be quickly adopted into loving new homes!
As we shifted our focus from community spay/neuter to supporting our local municipal shelters in 2020, our purpose has not changed. We seek to divert intake and help shelters manage the populations they have in their care through offering low-cost veterinary medicine, program support, and pet transport to rescue partners in other areas of the country. All of these methods reduce taxpayer dollars spent on the endless housing of animals who cannot find their way out of the shelter. Getting pets fixed and out on national transport to be adopted moves pets more quickly and in greater numbers out of government-paid care. Also, supporting pet owners who need assistance with supplies and veterinary care in order to keep their pets diverts unnecessary shelter intake. Many of our shelter partners have repeatedly remarked that we are a source of sanity in the madness.
It is critical to spay or neuter cats as early as possible BEFORE they can start reproducing as early as FOUR MONTHS and are capable of having three litters a year with an average of six kittens per litter.