Hello again from the Dawson Creek SPCA. I would like to take this opportunity to address again the importance of a major problem in this community as well as other communities in our area of the Peace Region, not spaying or neutering of pets. This is an issue that has been going on for years and needs to be rectified in order to help eliminate the excess of animals coming into our shelters.

  Between the North Peace Branch (Fort St. John) and the Dawson Creek Branch we take in on average anywhere from 1000-1200 dogs and 800-1500 cats per year most of which have come in as litters of puppies or kittens. These numbers are not only staggering but also ridiculous. The majority of this problem stems from not spaying or neutering your pets.

  People take necessary means to prevent pregnancies in themselves but yet they feel that it is unjust or cruel to have their animals fixed. The babies are born and what do you know they don?t get fixed either and so on and so on. Why aren?t people fixing their animals? Lets have a look at the constant excuses we hear on a daily basis.

Here are the 10 Worst excuses for not fixing your pet;

 – ?Just one litter and then we?ll get her fixed!? Studies show that virtually the entire pet overpopulation problem stems from the ?one litter only? mentality.

– ?My dog doesn?t run loose, therefore he/she doesn?t need to be fixed!? The majority of dogs in the shelter were picked up running loose from homes where ?they have never run before? and most are not fixed.

– ?We always find homes for the kittens /puppies!? This means that an equal number of animals already at the shelter lose those potential homes and face an uncertain future.

– ?I want my kids to witness the miracle of birth!? You can always rent a video if you so desire.

– ?My dog/ cat is so cute and unique, there should be more of him/her!? Shelters are full of unique animals based on this same mentality.

– ?It?s natural for them to breed!? There hasn?t been anything ?natural? about the domesticated animal since we began developing breeds thousands of years ago. If your dog is not a registered breed and/or papered it is considered a  ?MIXED? breed at best and should not be bred.

– ?I just couldn?t look my pet in the eye if I had him/her fixed!? Honestly folks, the pet will not hold it against you! Quit anthropomorphizing!

– ?A female dog or cat should be allowed one litter for health reasons!? This statement is medically, factually and ethically indefensible. In fact there have been studies done which indicate that fixing your animal can actually reduce health risks such as cervical or testicular cancers in pets.

– ?Spaying or neutering my pet will make him/her fat and lazy!? Actually too much food and not enough exercise will make your pet fat and lazy. Even unfixed pets can get fat and lazy if you as their caregiver are not providing adequate exercise!

– ?Fixing my pet will alter their personality!? The primary influences on an animal?s personality are the kindness and care with which it is raised.

 For anyone that is unable to afford the cost for the procedure, please contact your local shelter and we would gladly assist with this. We have a low-income system in place for helping those with monetary limitations.   

  Many Rural residents don?t bother to fix their animals because they are ?outside dogs? or ?barn cats? yet where do they turn when they have had puppies or kittens and no longer want the animals around. I have heard numerous times that ?they refuse to fix the animal because they don?t see it as a problem.? This is directed to those of you who have surrendered with this attitude. ?IT IS A PROBLEM!? A problem in which you yourselves are helping to fuel. One cat alone can produce upwards of 4 litters a year. Each litter can contain on average 6 kittens. Of these kittens half could be females. Each female can breed come the first heat cycle that occurs approx. 4-6 mos of age. Then the cycle continues. One cat in the first year produces 12 unfixed females, 2nd year those females produce 36 unfixed females, 3rd year those females produce 108 unfixed females and so on. There are only so many people in our community, how many of these animals do you think are actually in homes receiving food, water and medical care? How many have been killed or have died due to disease, abandonment, lack of proper nutrition or elemental factors?

All of those not spaying and neutering their animals are indirectly responsible for the overpopulation and needless suffering and deaths of animals. Help curb the problem and get your animal fixed. It only takes 15 mins twice in one day to drop your pet off at the vet in the morning and pick them up in the evening to get the procedure done. If you need help with the cost, the help is being offered. Take advantage and do your part.