Savannah's Paw Tracks

Autobiography of a Former Shelter Cat

How Many Vets to Spay/Neuter 10,000 Cats in 28 Months?


You won’t believe me because I am a cat.

pizap Ms Savvy Do

But I bet you will believe my Mom Linda.  This is her story to share.

I have borrowed Savvy’s blog post today to share a visit myself and Gemma, the President of Community Concern 4 Cats, recently made to a clinic that was but a dream 3 years ago. Fix Our Ferals is an all volunteer organization started in 1998. Click HERE to learn more about them and the work they do in the west end of my county, Contra Costa County, in Northern California.

We were rather stunned to learn that in the 28 months they have been open, with only ONE Board Certified Feline DVM working 4 1/2 days per week, 8:30 AM to 2:30 PM. they have spayed/neutered 10,000 cats! Most are feral, but they also offer very reasonably priced services to low income cat guardians as well. There is an informative, albeit rather long (7 minutes) video on their website that identifies all the other treatments they provide to the cats while they are in their care for the one day of their spay/neuter.

The easiest way to share our visit is to show you some photos of how great their clinic looks; it is about 1900 square feet of space and their volunteer staff work very hard to keep it looking wonderful.

I hope you have time to view this short slideshow…


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

We were amazed to learn that the DVM moves from one of the three surgery tables to the next doing her work. Volunteers have the cats prepped, then gently carry them into surgery on towels, NOT on boards similar to what most feral, low cost, clinics do. They also do not restrain the cats’ paws during surgery which others I have witnessed do. As soon as the Vet is done with one cat, she moves to the next, the cat completed goes to post op and a new patient is brought in to await its turn. That is how ONE Feline DVM can spay/neuter 10,000 cats in only 28 months.  Needless to say, both Gemma and I were very impressed!

Everything they do at this clinic is done with respect and kindness toward their patients. They have one Feline vet paid on a daily scale, another they use part time when needed–paid hourly.  They have one Registered Vet Tech and another who is completing his certification who trains the volunteers to do the majority of the work outside the surgery theater.

Gemma and I visited because we are joining together to find a way to build another low cost spay/neuter clinic for ferals and low income cat guardians, in the East end of our county. That area is a very popular dumping ground for unwanted cats. Sad, but true.

I, myself, am also very committed to working toward making my county public shelter a No Kill Shelter as part of the No Kill Movement in the USA.  But, Gemma, who has been doing TNR work for 30 years, and I both agree–there cannot be a No Kill Shelter if we don’t act now to spay and neuter the growing feral cat populations abounding in our area, and across the USA.

Many foundations are focused on increasing the number cats adopted. But if you volunteer for a rescue/shelter, you will know that more times than we want to acknowledge, the adopters of kittens fail to return to have them spayed or neutered.

However, if we can spay/neuter more feral,stray cats and indoor/outdoor cats who have guardians unable to afford the procedure, then we can get AHEAD of the number of cats who will end up in public shelters that continue to kill unadoptable cats; i.e. ferals.

Gemma and I are committed to partnering together, with others in our community, to bring a clinic, such as Fix Our Ferals Clinic to the East end of our county. It will be a long road, with many trials and tribulations. But we are convinced we must do this if we are to see change in the feral cat population in our area.  It is the right thing to do on many fronts, in my personal opinion.  I hope Savannah’s readers will agree.

Fix Our Ferals has kindly agreed to allow me to GIVE AWAY a very nice quality, soft, hooded sweat shirt to one of Savvy’s readers!! This is open to all readers, I promised Savvy that Dad and I would cover the mailing costs, no matter where this sweat shirt goes!  Savvy can be very persuasive as I am sure many of you know!

Please leave Savvy a comment to let her know you would like to be entered in the drawing, using, to select a winner of this great sweat shirt. I really think their logo is very striking!

You have until Wednesday, November 19th at midnight PST to leave a comment ON THIS BLOG POST. Savvy will remind you over the next few days!

Lastly, my partner in this endeavor does not even know what I am telling you!  Do you recall that wonderful give away being offered over at The Cat On My Head???  Click HERE if you want to check it out again.

I simply could not wait so I used the discount being offered via The Cat On My Head…to order THIS wonderful, delightful totally original water color painting…(click to bigify…so embarrassed but I had such a rotten ‘photo shoot’ with this painting!  Totally MY PROBLEM!)


I framed it myself…and unknown to my partner in building a NEW SPAY/NEUTER CLINIC, Miss Gemma…I am gifting it to her…with the agreement that this art piece is a permanent resident in the intake/reception area of the spay/neuter clinic we will help build for the feral/stray cats in our East County (and of course those whose guardians are low income but want to add the loving relationship of a cat into their family).

This is a very scary, yet invigorating project we have set our sights on…but Savannah and I and Dad Peter are up to it because we have Miss Gemma as our colleague.  I am NOT making a commitment from her rescue organization by stating this…but we know her personal energy will move us forward!

Now a little teaser…wait until you read Savannah’s future blog post about Wolves, Coyotes and Cats—Is Their Survival Related?

Paw Pats from Nana and Head Bonks from Sage


Single Post Navigation

30 thoughts on “How Many Vets to Spay/Neuter 10,000 Cats in 28 Months?

  1. Pingback: It’s A Selfie Kind of Day | Savannah's Paw Tracks

  2. Pingback: How Many Times in 30 Days…??? | Savannah's Paw Tracks

  3. That is a lot! Wow! What a great project to take on and so successful! Great job.

  4. This made my eyes a bit leaky.. We opened up a spay neuter clinic in April of 2011 and despite having just one vet and limited operational hours, they too just hit the 10k mark

  5. Pingback: You Are Not Going To Believe!!! | Savannah's Paw Tracks

  6. Mom Linda, that is a ginormous undertaking! Kudos indeed to you both and more power to your elbow. How generous to donate the painting! It is so cheerful. Love it! If by chance we should win the shirt we would like to donate to someone in the US! 🙂 Smoochies xoxox

  7. What a wonderful clinic! Thanks so much for the information that shows these programs can work and work better than our dreams!
    So I suppose we would like that shirt fur our Dad cause it is Cold here!

  8. The Swiss Cats on said:

    Wow ! Amazing ! That’s very impressive ! Great job and paws up for the human who are doing it ! Purrs

  9. meowmeowmans on said:

    This is amazing! What a huge and important undertaking this is by Mom Linda and Gemma. Thank you for your efforts to make a difference!

  10. This is absolutely fabulous…could you imagine if all areas had this? The suffering that this will eliminate is unbelievable.
    Jane x

  11. It’s amazing that there are 10,000 stray cats in one hood. Best of luck on the endeavor. That slide show almost made me toss my cookies. Mass surgeries can be very risky.

  12. That is so awesome and inspiring! I have a special feral story today.

  13. Ten thousand? TEN THOUSAND? Wow. MOUSES! That’s a whole lot of cats.

    Just goes to show you what good peeps can do when they put their minds to doin’ good things.


  14. What a huge…but oh so important…project you are undertaking, Mom L. Our low cost spay/neuter clinic has 2 vets working 4 days a week. The clinic has been so successful the past 2 years, they have outgrown their current building and are looking for new quarters so they can help even more animals. The mom says don’t hesitate to ask her for help on your project.

  15. Absolutely amazing!!! Well done!!!
    ღ husky hugz ღ frum our pack at Love is being owned by a husky!

  16. Mom Linda, you are amazing! Fix Our Ferals sounds like a fantastic place. Bless you for helping so many cats in such a short period of time. Keep up the wonderful work!

    Please enter me in the contest to win the Fix Our Ferals hoodie. I would love to wear it to all the pet events that my husband and I attend.

  17. S * S…total lee awesum oh what yur mom & dad iz doin ta help de ferals in de area… a paws…a paws…..N best fishes two everee one enterin d contest…de shirt iz rockin…N speekin oh rockin…de print iz way kewl… !!!

    heerz two a happee week oh end with plentee oh pie rat perch on yur platez ♥

  18. That is a wonderful place that Fix Our Ferals have. You and Miss Gemma are undertaking an amazing project and I wish you every success with it.
    Please can you enter me in the giveaway.

  19. What an amazing endeavor! And one we believe wholeheartedly in! Purrs….

  20. You are very involved in helping cats. Keep up the good work.

    We would love to enter the giveaway for the sweatshirt.

  21. Great post and best of luck for this impawtent project in the future!!


  22. randomfelines on said:

    we wish you the best of luck – we know how lucky we are to have a low cost clinic in our area open to rescues and the public….and they have a similar process – lots of tech and a couple of vets (though mom doesn’t know their numbers off the top of her head)

  23. pilch92 on said:

    That is fantastic! It is sad to think there were that many in one area that needed to be fixed, but I am happy it was done. What a great giveaway!

  24. Savvy, that’s just great and I hope there is a way to build another clinic for ferals and people who have a very small budget. I wish some peeps of my country would think like your Mom and Gemma, but sadly even when the vets have an offer for low cost spaying/neutering, not much people take the chance. One of our neighbors said he will not waste his money, because his cat has anyway a short lifespan because of our dangerous street. We had NO words. This a..h… (youknowhat) deserved NO cat or any animal..except fleas and lice…

  25. mistletoeandhitch on said:

    Our HuMom says she doesn’t understand WHY other humans are so against spay/neutering. So many furry family members are so much happier when propagation isn’t their main focus and then the entire family is happier. Plus, while she LOVES kittens, having a houseful would be traumatic. She would feel a personal responsibility to make sure each and every one had a happy, safe forever home. If she could give them up at all. No, spay and neutering is the way to go, both for the shadow kitties and those who have homes with humans. Sadly the cost of basic vet care keeps many would-be adopters from taking the plunge. Kudos to Mom Linda and her friend and co-hort Miss Gemma. All the kitties are lucky to have you.

  26. What an operation they have there.

  27. Dat’s gweat. And Paws up to da pawsum VET dat has dun all those surgeries. She be a wunnewful lady and a twu furiend to all cats evewywhere. Suwe hope yous can get yous clinic open and help those hoo can’t help themselves cuz of munny. Dat’s a pawsum sweat shirt and meez bets mommy wuld look gweat in it. We wuld luv to win it fur hers fur Christmas maybe. Hav a pawsum day.

    Luv ya’

    Dezi and Lexi

  28. An honorable endeavor. Our local shelters will not let a cat go home until after the spay/neuter surgery. That means adopters pay the adoption fee but have to return a few days later to bring home their pet.

  29. What an AMAZING endeavor your human has taken on, Savvy! I bet you are so proud of her for forging ahead with this. I bet it is both exciting and a little scary!

  30. kittiesblue on said:

    Wow, Mom Linda, our Mom said she had no idea that you were taking on a huge project like this. She is quite impressed and offers support in the way of purrs and prayers. When you start fund raising, let us know ’cause she would like to help out. That was nice of you to show off Kevin’s painting. It definitely is a cute one. Mom will let him know about this post. Thanks for linking to us. And best of luck with this most impawtant project. XOCK, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Fiona, Astrid, Lisbeth and Calista Jo

Waving paw...HI!...what'd 'cha think...??

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: