Board members of the Putnam County Humane Society recently approved funding for a spay-neuter assistance program, which is designed to help defray surgery costs for limited income pet owners.
"Pet overpopulation has long been a problem in our county and has worsened since our shelter's closure last year," board president Lynn Bohmer stressed. "We plan on reopening in 2013, but the board felt that we needed to do something about the issue now.
"A primary cause of dog and cat overpopulation is pet owners who are financially unable to spay or neuter their pets," Bohmer added. "We want to make the surgery more affordable.
"Sterilizing a pet not only prevents unwanted litters. It is beneficial in other ways. Spayed or neutered pets have fewer health problems and are less likely to run away or fight with other animals."
Humane Society volunteers will interview applicants 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 5 and 3-5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 8 at its store, Rescued Treasures, 1160 N. Jackson St. (west side of U.S. 231 North), Greencastle.
Applicants must demonstrate financial hardship and Putnam County residency. Upon approval, the owner(s) will receive a voucher for up to two pets, which may be used at one of four participating Putnam County veterinary clinics.
Vouchers represent a $35 contribution for cats and $55 for dogs.
Volunteers will explain requirements and additional costs that may be incurred at each clinic. Owners will be able to choose which clinic to use. The voucher must be redeemed within 30 days of issue.
Questions about the program may be directed to the Humane Society at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 653-7174 and leaving a message. As long as funds are available, applications will be accepted the first Wednesday and Saturday of each month during the same hours.
Over recent months, the Humane Society has earmarked 15 percent of all donations for this program as well as all the funds raised from the 2011 Jake & Tanner's Kid's Best Friend Camp at DePauw University.
Donations for the program may be sent to HSPC, PO Box 444, Greencastle, IN 46135.