March 13, 2019 EDUCATIONAL NEWS
SNAP has been serving San Diego County for almost 30 years. Our sole mission since that time, has been to reduce pet overpopulation and the suffering that follows. We are recognized as the first animal charity in the region to implement programs to decrease shelter intakes. We also remain the only affordable spay/neuter provider since 2003, to bring affordable spay/neuter clinics via the Neuter Scooter surgical bus, directly into communities struggling with chronic pet overpopulation. Here is a historical glimpse of the Spay-Neuter Action Project:
1990: SNAP was formed by a small group of dog-walking volunteers at a local shelter, to reduce the number of companion animals killed annually in the system. They published the very first referral guide of affordable spay/neuter providers in San Diego County, to address pet overpopulation at its source.
1996: SNAP received its non-profit status.
2003: SNAP became an affordable spay/neuter provider to serve economically-disadvantaged communities which lack affordable veterinarians, public and private spay/neuter programs, and pet education, to prevent, or stop, the birth of unwanted litters.
2004: SNAP was authorized to distribute Spay/Neuter Rebates (aka County Coupons) to residents through the San Diego Department of Animal Services “litter-free rebate” program.
2006: SNAP became a registered charity.
2016: SNAP awarded the Platinum Seal of Transparency. To date, 94% of all donations go directly to spay and neuter surgeries.
2018: SNAP reached the milestone of fixing over 60,000 cats and dogs, thus facilitating a decrease in local euthanasia rates as quoted by the San Diego Department of Animal Services: “The decline in euthanasia is explained by an increase in the percentage of animals adopted, an increase in the number of stray animals successfully returned to their owners (social media, microchipping) and the increase in SNAP’s spay-neuter programs (making spay and neuter available to the thousands of local pet owners who could not afford to do so otherwise).” Italics and bolding added.
2019: After receiving over 23,000 phone calls in 2018, the need for our services is clear! As pet owners become more responsible for the well-being of their companion animals, beginning with spaying and neutering, SNAP must find a way to meet this new growth.
NEUTER SCOOTER PROGRAMS
What began as a single program in 2003, has evolved into a range of specialty programs to meet the needs of various demographics.
Critical Communities: Targeting locations generating the highest number of shelter intakes, which lack the necessary resources to break the cycle of pet overpopulation.
Maryann’s Mission: Targeting senior pet owners 65+ on fixed incomes, to extend the life of companion animals, often which are the only company in the household.
MIL-SNAP: Targeting pets of military personnel E1-E6, to make it easier to find a reputable foster prior to deployment, by meeting the requirement that pets be fixed to qualify for short or long-term foster care. In partnership with the San Diego Chapter of Dogs on Deployment.
Project Homeless Connect: Targeting companion animals living with the homeless population in communities served, to reduce the incidence of litters born on the streets.
TRIBAL-SNAP: Targeting tribal communities to reduce the number of feral dogs born on Indian reservations. In partnership with the Native America Humane Society and Indian Health Council, Inc.
The cost per standard spay/neuter clinic is $3,229 which includes surgical supplies, related supplies, and medical wages. Our heavily discounted client fees range from $20 to $100 per procedure, to incentivize pet owners to spay and neuter in areas saturated with just too many surplus animals. Most of our clients are economically disadvantaged, so we accept “pay what you can” – such as $20 for a $100 fee, or at times, nothing at all, since we never turn anyone away for the inability to pay.We incur a deficit at almost ALL clinics.
Because 94 percent of our budget goes toward clinic operating expenses, our work is only possible through the generosity of donors. We apply for public and private grants year-round, but funding for animal welfare is highly competitive and notification can often exceed three months. It is imperative that we have ongoing support from individual donors, like you, to continue this important work to alleviate the suffering of companion animals and unwanted litters.