Preventing Animal Homelessness: A Milestone Moment
The ASPCA recently marked a significant achievement by completing our 500,000th spay/neuter surgery in New York City! Every year, our mobile and stationary clinics provide free and low-cost spay/neuter services to tens of thousands of underserved pet owners and animal rescue professionals, with the lifesaving mission of decreasing the number of dogs and cats entering shelters, reducing community cat populations, and contributing to the overall health and welfare of animals in the community.
“This milestone is a critical step toward preventing animal homelessness and ensuring that the city’s pets live healthier lives,” said Matt Bershadker, ASPCA President and CEO. “The ASPCA is dedicated to bringing affordable, high-quality spay/neuter surgeries directly to underserved communities with the goal of keeping pets and people together, and we thank our many partners across the city for their role in helping us reach so many animals.”
Our fleet of specialized mobile clinics travel to underserved communities in all five boroughs year-round. Additionally, we operate two full-time spay/neuter clinics for shelter and rescue animals in the New York City area. In close partnership with the local animal welfare community, our stationary clinics deliver much-needed services including spay/neuter, vaccines and microchips to homeless dogs and cats being cared for by rescue groups, humane organizations, foster networks and the trap-neuter-return-monitor (TNRM) community. We also partner with Animal Care Centers of NYC to ensure the animals in their care are spayed or neutered before placement in new homes. Both stationary spay/neuter facilities and our mobile units are outfitted with state-of-the-art medical equipment and staffed with highly trained and licensed medical personnel.
We unveiled our first mobile spay/neuter clinic in New York City, named the Care-A-Van, in 1997 to tackle the issue of animal homelessness and stem the tide of animals entering city shelters. In 2002, we made the strategic decision to direct services to the most underserved communities where the need is greatest within the city. With this 500,000th surgery, we are celebrating over 17 years of commitment to New York City pets and their guardians. And we couldn’t be more excited to continue to support that mission.
Recently, we announced a groundbreaking, multi-year initiative to build a network of ASPCA Community Veterinary Centers across the city to equip underserved communities with greater access to basic veterinary care, including spay/neuter services. Once they are operating at maximum capacity, the new Community Veterinary Centers will allow us to provide an additional 30,000 spay/neuter surgeries per year. The first ASPCA Community Veterinary Center is scheduled to open in the Bronx in late fall 2019, followed by Brooklyn in 2020 and Manhattan in 2021.