Shelter finalizing plans for spay program

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(This story by Jebb Johnston is being printed with permission of the Daily Corinthian.)

The Corinth-Alcorn Animal Shelter is finalizing plans for the Aug. 1 launch of a low-cost spay program that is hoped to be a solution to the county’s problems with unwanted animals.

It is launching in Rienzi for eligible owners of female dogs, and applicants may begin calling for screening on Aug. 1.

“The spays will start Sept. 1, and the cutoff will be the 20th of each month,” said Shelter Director Charlotte Doehner. “Applications taken from the first through the 20th will be spayed the following month. We feel that we’ll be able to work out all of the bugs by the end of October and be able to open it up to the city and the county on Nov. 1.”

The cost of $25 will include the procedure and a rabies vaccination. The pets do not have to return for removal of stitches. Eligibility will be based on income guidelines from the USDA’s Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

Donations and grant funding are helping to launch the program, and Doehner hopes to see the local governments give financial backing, as well.

“This is the answer to all the problems that we have,” she said. “Investment in this particular program will actually save them money in the long run, because it will reduce the number of unwanted animals in the city and the county.”

The Board of Supervisors recently gave its blessing to the program, and Supervisor Tim Mitchell is chairman for the effort.

News of the program, called ACSpay, has stirred much interest.

“We are already receiving calls from people wanting to know how can they get involved,” said Doehner. “We are very excited about it. I think it’s going to be a great program.”

Plans are to eventually expand it to include neuters and cats.

To apply for the pilot program for the Rienzi area, call Administrator Danyel Smith at 808-4153 beginning Aug. 1.