Pima Animal Care Center is privileged to care for homeless animals in the community, but to be honest, we see too many of them. And just as we do every spring, we'll be seeing litters of kittens and puppies brought to the shelter in need of homes.

If you want to help, the single most important thing you can do is spay or neuter your pets so they can't have new litters of kittens and puppies. As cute as they are, they grow into adults. And we already see upward of 23,000 stray, abused or abandoned animals a year at our shelter.

"Not only is spaying and neutering the responsible thing to do to improve animal welfare throughout the entire community, but on an individual basis, it will also help make your pet happier and healthier," said Kim Janes, Manager of Pima Animal Care Center.

It might be work revisiting some common myths:

-My pet will lose energy and pack on the pounds.

Altering your pets may reduce their tendency to wanter and may reduce some undeseriable incliniations, such as marking or being aggressive to other animals. The act of spaying or neutering alone won't lead to lethargy and/or weight gain, but all animals need proper exercise and diet to remain healthy and active.

-Children should have the opportunity to experience birth.

With educational content easily accessible online, there are other ways to provide your children an educational experience. Animals typically seek privacy when giving birth, so the additional stress of multiple witnesses could be disturbing to your pet. Spaying and neutering might be an important lesson for children in and of itself.

-Isn't anesthesia dangerous?

there is always a slight risk involved with undergoing anesthesia, but veterinatians can monitor the health of your pet during the procedure. If you're worried, talk to your vet. You'll find the health benefits associated with spay/neuter is likely to exceed the risk.

-Isn't it painful?

Your pet will be under anesthesia, so he or she won't feel pain. And any discomfort usually goes away with 1-3 days.

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