Revving up spay and neuter services in Salt Lake

Spay Neuter Clinic in Orem, UT
Best Friends Animal Society–Utah puts more oomph into resources.
By Denise LeBeau

With the official launch of No-Kill Utah (NKUT) last month, Best Friends Animal Society–Utah is pulling out all the stops to make a crucial service available to just about every Utahn. From a revamped animal medical clinic to more customer service, affordable procedures and easy access, Best Friends is committed to helping get every pet spayed or neutered in the Beehive State.

NKUT is an initiative of Best Friends Animal Society and a coalition of over 30 Utah-based animal welfare organizations. It’s designed to bring animal shelters around the state to a collective 90 percent save rate (the percentage of animals who enter a shelter and are not killed) by 2019. “We’re offering the NKUT Coalition reduced prices for spays and neuters, vaccinations and other services,´ says Ashley Farmer, Best Friends spay and neuter services manager. “Through spay and neuter efforts, we’ll have a direct impact on shelter populations, and it’s an important step towards reaching the goals of the NKUT initiative.”

Revamped resources

This year, the Best Friends Spay/Neuter Clinic in Orem didn’t just get cosmetically enhanced. The clinic has a new window display advertising the Fix at Four campaign. Fix at Four is designed to educate pet guardians that dogs and cats as young as four months old can begin having litters. The clinic is supporting earlier spay and neuter surgeries to prevent more homeless pets. But the exterior is just the beginning.
“We have done more than create an inviting new lobby; we’ve got more staff, a new exam room and have made it as easy as possible for folks to get their pets spayed or neutered to fit their schedule,” says Ashley.
In fact, the new muscle behind the clinic is to support the goal of fixing more pets in 2014. “Cats are entering the shelter system at a high rate,” says Ashley. “We really want to reach out to the cat guardians and community cat caregivers to make sure they take advantage of our services. We’re aiming at spaying and neutering around 9,000 pets this year.”
To help ensure every cat who needs to be fixed gets that opportunity, the clinic has low-cost and free services available to community cats. It's free to fix all community cats and $10 to get an owned cat spayed or neutered. The clinic is open Tuesday through Saturday, and intake is between 7:00 a.m. and 8:30 a.m. There’s no appointment needed for male cats or community cats (both male and female) during the hour-and-a-half intake window. Owned female cats require a scheduled appointment.
Beyond four walls

In addition to the Orem clinic, Best Friends provides a robust spay/neuter service throughout the state via the Spay Neuter Voucher program. Many veterinarians honor the spay/neuter vouchers, making it even easier for folks to get their pets’ surgeries done conveniently close to their homes.
“We want as many people as possible to sign up for our services, so the voucher program is available through our website,” says Ashley. “We have tried to pave the way as smoothly as possible to get folks to spay or neuter their pets. And with kitten season upon us, folks should know we do spay cats who are in heat. If anyone has an unspayed or unneutered cat, there’s no reason to wait to get their pets fixed. Sign up, or bring them in; it’s great for the health of the pet, as well as saving more lives.”
Get involved

Find out more about free and low-cost spay and neuter. Click here. 
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