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Editorial

Casper Critters


Wyoming is too Special to Litter - Spay and Neuter Your Pets



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04/01/2010 - By Gayle M. Irwin

Spring is just around the corner, and already the evidence of littering exists – puppies and kittens are advertised on flyers in grocery stores and in ads in the newspaper. What will happen to all of these little ones, and the ones yet to be born later this year?

Every spring and summer, our local animal shelters and rescue organizations become overwhelmed with the number of puppies and kittens brought to them because the people who let their pet breed couldn't find homes for all the youngsters born in the litter. There is one simple solution: spay or neuter your pet!

Many myths exist about spaying and neutering, and most are just that: myths. If you have concerns about the surgery and its affect upon your pet, discuss these with your vet.

Here are some facts about pets that are spayed or neutered:

1. They tend to be better behaved.

2. They tend to be more affectionate.

3. Spayed females don't attract unwanted, aggressive males nor do they exhibit the nervous behaviors from hormonal changes and cry piteously waiting for a mate.

4. Neutered males are less likely to mark territory (such as your couch!) and they are less likely to roam.

To learn more about spaying and neutering myths and facts, visit

http://www.humanesociety.org/issues/pet_overpopulation/facts/spay_neuter_myths_facts.html

Finances can be a concern; spaying and neutering are not necessarily inexpensive operations. However, rates do vary among veterinarians in our own community and within a 60-mile radius. You can also contact the Central Wyoming Spay & Neuter Foundation (www.cwsnf.org) and inquire about vouchers, which are income-guideline-based. Also, read and listen to the media for the latest on the low-cost Wyoming Spay and Neuter Clinics, held a few times a year around the state, brought to various communities with support from the Animal Adoption Center in Jackson and several community-based animal welfare organizations around the state. Visit the Animal Adoption Center's website for more information: http://www.animaladoptioncenter.org/index.php?page=news&id=43

For the people who have additional funds and love animals, help others help their pet. You can do this by contributing to the CWSNF and its special events; the organization's annual Golf Tournament is scheduled for June 11, 2010. Or, help your neighbor or friend pay for their pet's spay or neuter surgery.

Lack of homes and pet overpopulation is a serious national, regional, state and community problem –so let's fix the problem by fixing our pets! Remember: Wyoming is too special to litter and to have those litters end up at shelters or euthanized. So, spay and neuter your pets this year!

________________________________________________________________________

Gayle Irwin is an author and speaker with a deep affection and concern for pets. She is the author of two children's books: Sage's Big Adventure (2007) and Sage Learns to Share (2009). She is also a speaker in schools as well as a former journalist and humane and conservation educator. Her publication credits include a story in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Lessons Learned from the Dog (2009). She is the proud "pet parent" of two adopted dogs, who serve as characters in her books. For more information about her writing and speaking, visit www.sagestory.com and www.gaylemirwin.com.

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