Help is here for low-income owners to spay, neuter their pets
June 7, 2012
By Jordan Baer
Kitten season is upon us and Valley Animal Partners wants to ensure that everyone who needs to spay and neuter his or her pets is able to do so.
Founded nearly six years ago by Cathi Linden and Andrea Logan, the group seeks to prevent unwanted animals and shelter overcrowding by making veterinary care available to those in need.
“My main goal is that people who want to fix their animals are able to,” said Logan, who notes that cats are having a lot of litters right now and there are not enough homes for them.
She urges cat owners to have their cats spayed before they’re able to have kittens.
“Our mission is to reduce the number of animals that are going into shelters and that are dying in shelters,” Logan said.
But their mission doesn’t end there.
The partners are also working in collaboration with the Snoqualmie Valley Pet Food Bank and the Mount Si Helping Hand Food Bank to provide low-income pet owners with pet food every month. Not only does the partners group help with the transportation of the food, but it has provided three sites for people to donate to the cause (Pet Place Market, U-Dirty Dog and Another Hair Place, all in the North Bend area).
“VAP is looking to continue to grow and one of the ways we can grow is to join forces with other local groups or pet-related programs that fill the need,” said Tracy Skylstad, president of the partners group.
As the group moves forward, Linden said she hopes that the services provided to pet owners can progress as well. “The goal is to not only provide spay and neuter, but now it is hard for people to pay for pet care. It’d be nice to see if we could put 50 percent of our profits aside into an emergency veterinary fund,” Linden said.
Bottom line, “people shouldn’t be denied the companion of an animal just because it’s not cost-effective,” Skylstad said.
The partners group has helped 135 animals to date and is able to provide its services through annual fundraisers, which often include dinners with dessert auctions and a Ladies Night Out.
“The biggest way people can help out is to attend our events and join us and bid on some desserts,” Logan said.
The partners group is hoping to have an event between now and the end of June, but it will also have a booth at the North Bend Block Party on July 14, where informational sheets will be available.
Help or get help
Learn more about Valley Animal Partners and how you can help at www.valleyanimalpartners.com. In order to qualify for veterinary assistance, pet owners must reside in Preston, Fall City, North Bend or Snoqualmie. They can download an application online at the group’s website.
Jordan Baer is a student in the University of Washington Department of Communication News Laboratory. Comment at www.snovalleystar.com.