Emily's Place Spay & Neuter Outreach Society
Janet Dale ~ Director and President.
Amherst, Nova Scotia
September 22, 2013
More than 1,000
Overview:Nova Scotia's cat population has exploded, shelters and rescues are overwhelmed. We hear the hue and cry of individuals: “If you can't afford a pet, then don't get one!” As you are reading this I know you have heard that anthem too. However living in systemic poverty, being underemployed, living with a catastrophic or chronic illness doesn't negate you from loving your pets or wanting to share your life with a furry friend. And there lies the problem: All animals can be expensive but factor in that cats are prolific breeders...It's a perfect storm leading to thousands of unwanted litters each year in this province.
Who are we ? We are Emily's Place Spay & Neuter Outreach Society. A registered non-profit dealing with cat over population. Committed to helping families fund spay & neuter procedures for their cats in Cumberland County, NS. Created in December 2012, initially we were just a handful of people trying to help. We spayed our first female~“Babycat” in mid January 2013 and we've not looked back! We started to get organized, continually fund raising, gaining traction in the community and we received our Letter of Incorporation from the Registry of Joint Stocks in August 2013. Now a legal non-profit we are proud to report our 38th cat went in Nov 20/13 for her spay. Just think of the litters that have been prevented. We've been busy!
More than numbers... Over population isn't just about too many animals. It contributes to stress for the animal, stress for the family and cats who are intact have three very real issues to contend with.
1. Biology. It can be messy. An intact male cat can damage a home due to spraying. It's not their fault, they are just following instinct and that instinct is telling them to reproduce. Intact females can spray as well, it's not a myth and females can be very vocal; driving their poor families around the bend with constant “screaming” as their hormones are in charge.
2. Fighting, Breeding & Disease. These cuddly balls of fluff as kittens grow into adults very quickly. Once sexually mature, they are compelled to mate and they will go to any lengths to find what they need. They fight over territory daily and in that mix of hissing, spitting, tooth and claw, injuries occur and this is how disease is spread. Through blood, saliva and breeding, viruses and bacteria run rampant and in many instances will be passed onto unborn kittens who never stood a chance.
3. Kittens. They are cute, they are cuddly and many are born to die of disease within just days after delivery because of what we've described above. New kittens full of infection can't breathe making nursing impossible. The outcome is devastating, inhumane and completely preventable if the parent had been altered. Spay and neutering prevents litters and is effective in halting the spread of disease in cat populations.
Our solution: We are solution based as every family brings unique challenges. There can be multiple barriers for families with intact cats and we have found the answer is not always financial. Of course finances are a big part, but also transportation and/or not having proper crates is problematic. We provide door-to-door delivery for clients who don't drive, or who don't have a vehicle; if crates are needed we lend them out as well for the day of appointment and also while the patient is recovering at home. In addition to the spay/neuter, we provide prescription worm and flea medication so puss goes home with a fresh start.
What we've accomplished so far: We've received wonderful feedback from the community at large, and the proof is in our group numbers; now more than 180 people! We provide a holistic approach without judgement as it can be difficult reaching out to strangers and asking for help. Emily's Place has already impacted our local area by offering hope and community spirit as we raise much of our funds through collecting returnables, used car/truck batteries and scrap metal. We encourage owners to actively collect returnable containers as a great way to continue to pay it forward for others on the waiting list, and they do! We have spayed/ neutered 38 cats since January 2013, plus our waiting list grows weekly. Ideally we would love to complete two procedures a week but our funds just don't provide that consistently at this time. We want to continue to provide this service for local families in Cumberland County but we need help! With some key funding we could take the reins firmly in hand and our impact would be felt that much sooner. Our future goals include reaching and maintaining 100 procedures per year and of course lowering wait times for families. Creating sustainable funding partners is a critical piece of the puzzle and one I know we can attain! Emily's Place could one day be in communities all over the province and with continued hard work anything is possible, one cat and family at a time.
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We are a non-profit society dedicated to helping families fund spay & neuter procedures. If you would like to support our outreach or for more information contact 902-667-4226 or email us at [email protected] Thanks for your interest and vote! Our 38th cat went in for her spay Nov 20, 2013
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