Animal Alliance named recipient of CNY Community Foundation grant

— The Animal Alliance of Greater Syracuse has been selected to receive a $20,000 grant from the Central New York Community Foundation to purchase start-up equipment for a mobile spay/neuter clinic, which will move around to various city locations altering both dogs and cats belonging to low-income residents.

“Spay/neuter is so important,” said Linda Young, president of the Animal Alliance, “because Central New York has a huge overpopulation problem with both cats and dogs, resulting in a lot of suffering as well as a high euthanasia rate. Spay/neuter is the only solution to that.

“Unfortunately,” she continued, “not only is Syracuse lacking in true options for pets in low-income areas, but transportation can be a problem. Even if they can afford the surgery, many people can’t get their pet there, so we decided to bring the clinic to them.”

According to Young, a “perfect storm” brought this undertaking together.

“A member of our group, Dr. Jennifer Bailey, who had shared the vision for this clinic for many years, graduated from veterinary school at the same time we were approached by a private donor wanting to subsidize surgeries to make them more affordable,” Young said. “It became a question of ‘if not us, who; if not now, when.’”

“While we have the funding for equipment and the subsidies for surgeries, there remain many additional costs, such as medications and other supplies,” said AAGS board member Karen Antczak. “We also anticipate hiring a part-time veterinary technician to manage the ordering of supplies, to be available for follow-up with clients, and to schedule the community veterinarians who have graciously stepped up to volunteer their time.”

The clinic is partnering with Cornell University’s Shelter Medicine Program and is expected to begin operation in April, initially working in conjunction with the Animal Welfare Coalition’s Healthy Pet Clinics.

AAGS is a 501(c)3 tax exempt charity advocating for a strengthened safety net and reduced euthanasia rates for animals in CNY. Donations are gratefully accepted at P.O. Box 94, Liverpool, NY 13088 or online at animalallianceofgreatersyracuse.org.

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