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March 26, 2012

"Tails" from Across the Globe: World Spay Day 2012

Humane Society International

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Aanifeira – Associação dos Amigos dos Animais de Santa Maria da Feira

Two mother dogs, called Shine and Luana, and a total of 27 puppies (three litters of nine each) were all spayed and neutered at the Aanifeira Shelter Veterinary Clinic during the month-long World Spay Day event in February. Aanifeira's two full-time vets had the valued help of international volunteer interns from Belgium, Holland and Ireland who gave their time unselfishly to help us with this campaign.

During the month of February, when Aanifeira's members came to the shelter clinic to treat their dogs, they had the opportunity of learning about our participation in this event through general visits to see the animals, where staff explained the details of the campaign. Our English blog also helped publicize this campaign throughout the world.



Asociación Hondureña Protectora de los Animales y su Ambiente (AHPRA)

On the afternoon of Saturday, February 25, members of the Board of Directors and some AHPRA volunteers implemented a Feeding Brigade for street animals and pets belonging to low-income owners in the El Tablón village, located in the municipality of the Central District to the south of Tegucigalpa. We fed 32 street dogs that we found at several spots in the village, including those roaming close to garbage containers. We also visited 17 families who received dog food, dewormer and literature on responsible pet ownership, emphasizing the importance and manifold benefits of spay/neuter of their pets and the support they can get from AHPRA to improve the lives of their companion animals.



Asociación al Rescate de los Animales (ARANI)
El Salvador

On February 26, ARANI organized an educational event in the capital city of San Salvador at La Ciclovía, a closed circuit where families go walking or jogging with their pets on Sundays. On one of the streets, we installed a stand to offer free vaccination and ear cleaning for cats and dogs, as an appeal for people to hear the sterilization message.

With the support of the Ministry of Health, we applied 75 anti-rabies vaccines and lobbied owners to convince them to sterilize or spay their pets. The majority of people showed interest and many gave us their contact information to help them find an appropriate clinic. Besides, we raised funds to perform four sterilizations of our rescued animals at the shelter by selling stickers, t-shirts and other promotional products with educational messages.

During the event, we handed out more than 300 flyers about the benefits of spaying or neutering pets, and used a microphone to reach all the people passing by.



Asociación de Amigos por los Animales de Sosúa (AAAS)
Dominican Republic

We were blessed to have a team of 14 volunteers from World Vets join AAAS to do a field operation for World Spay Day in an area of great need, Sosua Abajo. Over a three-day period, we sterilized 137 dogs and cats with an average age of 2.2 years (many in their fertility prime!) and also performed  about 50 health consultations and distributed/administered over 200 doses of anti-parasite medication. A group of local schoolchildren came on a mini field trip and were able to see all aspects of the operation. Many pet owners waited for several hours to have their pets sterilized, sitting under a large tarp for shade. Lots of hugs and expressions of appreciation were given by the residents of Sosua Abajo to the two teams working with the animals.



Ghana Society for the Protection & Care of Animals (GSPCA)

GSPCA visited Providence International school in Kotobabi-Accra to educate schoolchildren about the need and importance of caring for their pets. We also educated them about the benefits that they will get when they spay and neuter their pet, along with the benefits to the animal and the community. The children were happy and asked many questions.



Green Zebra

In Hungary in February, it is really cold. We were amazed that about 100 pet owners came to participate with more than 60 dogs to our beauty contest for spayed/neutered dogs. We decided to organize this event twice a year… This contest fits our aim to show people that neutered dogs are beautiful, they are not fat, they are not crazy, and as there were purebred participants, we can show that it is also possible and wise to neuter purebred dogs... It was amazing how much owners enjoyed this program, although everybody got frozen by the cold wind.  Everybody was proud of their favorite pet and we also organized some games for the dogs while they waited for the results. About 10 dogs participated in Ebathlon ("eb" means "dog" in Hungarian, so it is a funny name for "dog games"). Many dogs showed us tricks and very good behavior...We gave all participants a special World Spay day gift bag and our table calendar so they could show and tell other people about spaying all year round.




During this event, most of the dogs (males and females) were from the street. People in the slums gave their dogs to our dog catching team after our announcement of a World Spay Day event. Many of them brought their dogs to our clinic to get them operated on. It was really a busy month for all of us here.



Port Colborne Feline Initiative

"Baldacious! The Big Shave" event was hosted at Bridget's Laundromutt in Port Colborne, Ontario, Canada and raised $1875.00 for Port Colborne Feline Initiative spay/neuter programs. PCFI friend and volunteer Arnie McBay challenged the community to pledge donations of $500 to shave his head. With an immediate fantastic response, he upped the ante to include his moustache and legs at another $250 each. The final tally was an amazing $1875.00, with donations coming from all over Canada and from even friends in the U.S. It was a fun and fast way to raise funds. Online donations through email and website outreach were key to our success in this fundraising campaign. PCFI was founded in June 2009 and is a very small group in a small community. Holding an event on World Spay Day helped to create awareness of our organization and what we do.



Lega Pro Animale

On Friday, February 24, another “spay day” for stray cats took place at the Lego Pro Animale Spay and Neuter Centre in Castel Volturno, southern Italy… The “spay team” of Lega Pro Animale is proud of their result: 57 caretakers caught 159 cats (109 female and 50 male), who were spayed and neutered in only one day.



Nigeria SPCA

Members of the public were requested to bring in their dogs and cats to the clinic for sterilization during Spay/Neuter Awareness month. Leaflets and information were provided to the public on proper care of pets. It was interesting seeing many pet owners becoming interested in the welfare and well-being of their animals. The Nigeria SPCA has effectively used World Spay Day to bring animal issues closer to the people and the number of people getting to know the work and activities of the Nigeria SPCA continues to grow. The most interesting aspect was our next-building neighbor, who brought over her dog and cat on World Spay Day. The lady is a medical doctor and has been occupying that building for over 10 years without knowing that the next building housed an animal organization. The Nigeria SPCA was in ruins for over 10 years until it was revived and renovated from 2010-2011. She was very happy to see the Nigeria SPCA back—rendering service to animals and people.



Proteccion Animal Ecuador Ambato (PAE Ambato)

At the end of five days of hard work, we helped 1026 animals, not only in our inner city, but also in the five poor areas where we sent a mobile unit and also to another town, Riobamba... In the end, we had about 60 volunteers working 12 hours each day, tirelessly and with no salary other than the happiness of helping thousands of animals avoid unwanted births and unnecessary suffering and death. It was a unique example of how a local humane organization such as PAE Ambato, with the support of the local municipality, private organizations and an international group of volunteers could make it possible to have this huge spay/neuter campaign in Ecuador—and avoid thousands of unwanted puppies and kittens.



Fundación Spay/Panama

Our main event for World Spay Day was a three-day blitz held at a Catholic retreat in Penonome (about three hours from the Spay/Panama Clinic)… We arrived Friday midday and started unpacking and setting up the equipment. The trained crew can set up the clinic very quickly and efficiently. Our hosts then called us to lunch. After some great rice and lentils, I walked around to the back of the kitchen. What did I see, but a mama dog standing there with three puppies. The beauty and peace of the place was instantly shattered for me. The good thing was I knew that by the end of the weekend, they would be fixed… Within two weeks, Spay/Panama received this email from a U.S. embassy employee: “Hello, I live in Panama City and would very much love to adopt a puppy this weekend for my daughter, 8, who has been wanting one forever. We already adopted Moses from you. Do you have any available and what kind are they? Thanks.” She and her daughter came to see the little puppy and fell in LOVE! They took one and named her Skittles…The caretaker at the retreat has now taken responsibility for the other two little puppies. They will now be a nice addition to the grounds without adding more unwanted dogs to the site. They are part of God’s blessed creation. These little pups and their mom did not have anyone who sponsored them. Even so, Spay/Panama couldn’t ignore them—no animal is turned away.


Tanzania Animal Welfare Society

The event attracted many people as it was done in Kimara Bonyokwa, one of the poor village areas of Dar es Salaam city... The event created awareness of responsible pet ownership and the value of the animals. Some leaflets were given to the owners and we hope it will help to reduce animal cruelty in the area and the majority of Dar es Salaam city. The simplicity of the sterilization procedures was one of the most interesting thinsg—just under-tree surgery without complicated theatres and equipment, which made the visiting vets from Denmark see that it is possible to do things in all situations. All animals operated on have recovered and are doing well. We thank HSI for informing us about this great event, World Spay Day, which helps to reduce the population of dogs and cats humanely and lowers cases of cruel killing of animals as a way of decreasing population.


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