Spay/Neuter: A National Initiative

Spay/Neuter: A National Initiative

Pet overpopulation isn’t a “local” problem! Across the United States shelters, rescues and animal control agencies fight with and try to deal with the overabundance of animals that need help. Because of this comedian Rebecca Corry created the Standup for Pits Foundation and hosts the national initiative “Spay/Neuter Angel Day” named in honor of her departed pit bull, friend and advocate, Angel. On April 2, the anniversary of Angel’s passing, SUFP organizes shelter and rescue organizations across the country to hold free spay/neuter clinics on the same day. SUFP shells out thousands of dollars to pay for this national event.

This year we were honored to receive a grant from SUFP to host a clinic in Minneapolis as part of Spay/Neuter Angel Day. Across the country, 22 cities held clinics with the goal to spay/neuter 868 dogs. With the need for these services in the Twin Cities growing and growing, it was extra special to be able to add this seventh clinic to our schedule!

For Corry, who knows the sad facts of shelter overpopulation in America, this is a vital day for protecting the future of all homeless animals. According to Corry, one unaltered female dog and her puppies can create 67,000 dogs in six years, if none of the dogs are spayed or neutered. “So if we are fixing 600, you do the math on that. That’s the potential to save millions of lives,” she adds.

Corry hopes efforts like this open animal lovers’ eyes to the importance of spay/neuter efforts. While donating to a vital initiative like spay/neuter clinics may not be as cute as giving funds to the care of one rescue dog, these donations will go on to change countless lives.

“The best way to save dogs from the shelter is not letting them get in there to begin with,” sums up Corry.[1]

 We couldn’t agree more, and that the entire basis for our Fix Your Pit program. On April 2 we saw 16 dogs; 16 more than we would have been able to without this extra clinic. The Stand Up for Pits Foundation footed the entire bill, for us and for the 21 other cities, totaling more than $70,000.

Supporting spay/neuter initiatives is the best way to stop the cycle of homeless, abused, unwanted and euthanized animals. Please give today!

 

[1] https://people.com/pets/stand-up-for-pits-angel-spay-neuter-day/

More Than We Bargained For; Blue’s Day

More Than We Bargained For; Blue’s Day

Our October spay/neuter clinic started out like every other clinic. We opened doors at 7:30am and began the mad dash of welcoming and checking in our clients. They filled out and sign some forms, then trustingly hand their dogs over to us. We weighed each one, and got them settled in a kennel to wait their turn for surgery. Vet staff sorted paperwork, vaccinations, microchips and got everything in order to begin. It was business as usual.

Throughout the day, we had a few procedures that went a little longer than expected so we had dogs like Blue, patiently waiting his turn. Finally, it was Blue was prepped for surgery and everything went according to plan: from the administration of the anesthesia, to the actual neuter procedure, then his move to the recovery area were our Save-a-Bull volunteer team keeps the pups warm and assists with waking them up.

Just like all of the dogs before him, Blue awoke on his own and became alert. But within seconds that all changed and Blue was gasping for air. The volunteer sitting with Blue immediately alerted the veterinarian team, who jumped into action and began assisting Blue to breathe. They were able to stabilize him, but he kept lapsing and struggling to breath. The AHS veterinarian team recommended that Blue go to the nearby emergency vet and stay the night for observation and testing to determine what was happening.

Every surgery comes with risks, and while unexpected and extended situations are not part of the Fix Your Pit program, we knew emergency care was going to be really expensive. We told Blue’s family that we would cover the costs of his night at the e-vet.

At the e-vet Blue received a chest xray, it was discovered that Blue had a birth defect that has resulted in an enlarged heart. This is what made the surgery very hard for him and caused him to crash in recovery. Since Blue is only four months old and had never been to the vet, no one had any idea of his condition. Now, his family had very few options: they could transfer him to the U of M for a consult with a specialist (which is very expensive); or they could make the decision to euthanize him (the severity of his condition will continue to progress as he grows older and he could pass at any time); or, they could just take him home, limit his exercise, and see how he does. Blue went home with is family the following day. He’s currently happy and doing well with restricted exercise, and is hoping to see a cardiac specialist for further recommendations.

If Blue’s family had not had the opportunity for the free spay/neuter clinic, they may never have known about his heart condition. With too much exercise, Blue could have died of heart failure with no warning. While there may not be anything that can be done for Blue’s heart, his family is aware of his limitations and is living every day to the fullest and loving him like crazy for whatever time he has.

While Blue’s “surprise” is the most severe we’ve encountered at a clinic, we often see dogs that require a little extended care beyond the spay/neuter services we offer. From hernias, to tooth extractions, to minor skin and ear infections, we do our best to send each dog home with everything he or she needs. This of course goes above and beyond our budget for the Fix Your Pit program, but how can we say no? Your donations make this possible and there are many, many dogs like Blue who are so very grateful for your generosity. For many it’s not only a free spay/neuter, but a chance to be seen by a vet and get much needed care for the very first time. Thank you!

Going the Distance: It’s All About Teamwork

Going the Distance: It’s All About Teamwork

Technology, we all rely heavily on it to help manage our busy lives, and our rescue is no different. Each of us has experienced a time when technology let us down and that’s exactly what happened during our registration process for the June spay/neuter clinic. Somehow our registration system, which had one job to do, failed to turn off access when the spots at our clinic were filled. Instead of the typical 15-18 appointments, we had almost 40 registrations! There was NO way we could physically accommodate that many surgeries in one day, but we didn’t want to let anyone down. So, with the help of the admin staff at the Animal Humane Society we were able to reschedule some of the appointments to a different date, and we still covered the costs of the surgeries for those who could reschedule.

But we still had 24 dogs to see at the June clinic, which was really going to stress the AHS veterinary team. We are lucky to have a great relationship with the AHS – from the admin team to the veterinarians, they all worked so hard to make sure every dog got the time and attention and quality care they deserved. Our volunteer team really stepped up too, helping with every aspect of care and recovery for the dogs at the clinic. The team finished for the day and sent the last dog home at close to 4:00pm, more than three hours later than usual, making it an incredibly long day. But it was all worth it to look back at the work we did as a team and the additional impact we were able to make on this one, crazy-busy day.

Our Fix Your Pit program could not be as successful as it has been this year without support from the Animal Humane Society’s Veterinarian and admin teams and without the financial backing from donors like you during Give to the Max Day. Thank you for being apart of this team!

Update on Tux

Update on Tux

Adopted: September, 2018

Dog’s former name: Mossimo

What are the best things about your dog?
Tux is full of love and loyalty. He has this thing he does where he looks up at his humans with only his eyeballs, that melts my heart.

Tell us about your dogs favorite activities, sports or training:
Tux has spent his last year with our family, snuggling, dog parking, trying out cabin/lake life, looking up to and annoying his big dog brother Zeus and making friends: both people and dogs! He also does zoomies so fast in the back yard that his back legs get ahead of this front sometimes!

How do people react to your “pit bull”?
Tux looks more like a lab but he has a very protective nature. Sometimes people are afraid of his bark but I’ve learned that if new people come over to our house, we just need to meet them outside so Tux knows it’s okay for them to come in our home, and then we can all go inside together.

Does your dog have any nicknames?
“Tuxi- Boo Boo”, “Mr. T”, “T-Money”, and “Ceedo”

FAST FIVE with Tux

  1. Food: Piggy or picky? Not picky at all
  2. Dog beds: Sleep on or unstuff? Unstuff as a puppy, now sleep on
  3. Travel: Car rides or car sick? Tux loves Car rides!
  4. Water: No way or splash all day? Loves water as long as he can touch.
  5. Seasons: A day in the sun or a day in the snow? Tux will play outside in rain, shine, sun or snow!

Submitted by Cecily S.

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Update on Marv

Update on Marv

Adopted: September, 2018

Dog’s former name: Marv

What are the best things about your dog?
He is patient with me and loves being a part of our family… that’s what he says anyway.

Tell us about your dogs favorite activities, sports or training:
Marv loves treats, and has worked to master skills to get treats. He will sit pretty and shake your hand and lay down for your to give him treats.
He will chase, balls, sticks, snow balls, etc. and even trade you for a treat.

Do you have any extraordinary adventures or accomplishments?
Marv is friendly with everyone and every dog he meets. Taking him new places; he’s always ready to go (with a boost up into the truck) and ready to meet new people and play!

How do people react to your “pit bull”?
People admire Marv for his mastiff look, and are kind of perplexed when we tell them he’s a pitbull mix. “He’s only 2 feet tall. Of course he’s a mix. “

Does your dog have any nicknames?
Nahh. Marv is who he is, and he relates well with his name. The most variation from there is, he get called Dog.

FAST FIVE with Marv the Dog

  1. Food: Piggy or picky? He eats most any food he’s given, which is why we try to limit his human food.
  2. Dog beds: Sleep on or unstuff? Marv has dog beds in every room of the house, and loves lounging on them when we are in the same room.
  3. Travel: Car rides or car sick? Marv drool and blow out his coat on every car ride, but that doesn’t stop him from getting right in there.
  4. Water: No way or splash all day? He never met a bucket of water that didn’t taste good. But he’s definitely not a fan of being IN water.
  5. Seasons: A day in the sun or a day in the snow? He’s a summer baby and it shows. Snow and even rain are not his friend.

Submitted by Christopher S.

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