Archive for September, 2012
Wishbone had a dream to fund a low cost spay/neuter program for our Allegan County
community. Each year our community and our Allegan County Animal Shelter
experience an overwhelming volume of kittens, cats, puppies and dogs. They are left
homeless for a variety of reasons. Some families just cannot afford to alter their animals,
and therefore bring the offspring to the shelter, or release them to the wilds of the
For those cats that live on our hometown streets or in our county fields, their lives are
an endless challenge to find food and shelter from the elements including wildlife.
They are victims to such illnesses as Feline Leukemia and Feline Infectious Peritonitis,
fatal diseases that continue to plague outdoor cat colonies. For dogs, the unexpected
and unwanted pregnancies produce an endless stream of puppies that can suffer
the consequences of a breeding gone awry, like our beloved Lucky. A Dachshund /
Rottweiler mix that left him susceptible to birth defects. Suffering brain damage his life
was shortened. A tragedy despite the efforts of leading medical experts brought in for
his care. It is for these reasons Wishbone knew this problem of homeless pets had to be
tackled from the source, the uncontrolled breeding.
With the help of community member Jane Underwood, a fund-raiser was held for
Wishbone that provided the initial seed money to launch our first low cost spay/neuter
clinic for cats in 2011. With medical services of Spay Neuter Express from Lowell, a
state of the art mobile surgical bus came to our Douglas Wishbone HOUSE location.
All medical services provided by a vet and vet tech, while the Wishbone HOUSE
volunteers help monitor the animals to recover for the day.
Grant writing as well as event donations have helped support the ongoing effort. Our first
grant for the clinic was from West Shore AWARE, and the 2010 fall fund-raiser with
4 PAWS with a CAUSE provided support for this vital program in its first year. This
commitment to fund the program allowed us to sponsor more than 200 animals in our
first year. Calls to register for the next clinic continue to come in. There is no shortage of
clients needing service. An average of 45 animals are altered at each clinic.
Funding the Spay/Neuter clinics is an all year round fund raising effort. Thanks to the
funding from many individuals and community resources such as CaFe Pet Spa with
the students of the Veterinary Technical Science program at the Allegan County Area
Technical & Education Center, as well as the Allegan County Community Foundation
TAG Team and Legacy grants. Without the ongoing support of local Allegan community
organizations, funding limit would effect the number of animals served.
Fast forward to today in 2012. There have been 12 successful spay/neuter clinics to
date. Wishbone has altered over 500 animals and there are more clinics planned for this
year. Money donated this June from the non-profit 4 PAWS with a CAUSE event was
immediately put to work at our most recent August 18th clinic. This clinic brought 42
animals for surgery. Six were dogs, and 36 were either cats or kittens. Nearly half of
those 36 cats/kittens were strays living outdoors.
Yes, Wishbone’s low cost spay/neuter clinics are a huge success. Please spread the word.
Our next clinic is September 22 at the Wishbone HOUSE, Douglas. Call 269-455-5247
to register. Please support Wishbone’s LET FIX IT low cost spay/neuter program. It’s the
right thing to do.