Vets offer reduced fees for desexing pets

WITH local shelters and pounds filled to capacity, the call-out is being made once again for pet owners to desex their animals.

Operation Wanted is a first of its kind major campaign to encourage responsible pet ownership.

RSPCA Queensland and a statewide community of proactive vets will join forces to alleviate pressures on shelters, pounds and the environment, providing a reduced fee for desexing and microchipping procedures.

RSPCA spokesman Michael Beatty said that while Gladstone was not formally included in the campaign, pet owners were able to travel to make the most of the discounted fees and their chance to win a family holiday.

"There are countless dogs and cats in our community that are homeless or end up in RSPCA shelters or council pounds," Mr Beatty said.

"Despite working tirelessly to reduce the number of these animals, our data clearly shows that there has been no reduction in the numbers in recent years.

"The RSPCA believes this is partly explained by a low desex rate amongst domestic pets.

"We believe that increasing the number of dogs and cats desexed before they have a chance to breed should, over time, reduce the number ending up in our facilities."

The project will operate for three months, with vets across the state providing a fee reduced by 20% for desexing and microchipping.

As a further incentive for the Gladstone community to travel and take advantage of the offer, participants will get the chance to win a $1200 BP petrol voucher and an entry into a draw to win a family holiday.

RSPCA Queensland has developed a website specifically for this promotion, and all participating veterinary practices will be listed on the site.

Mr Beatty said the program was anticipated to deliver great successes, and similar campaigns would hopefully include Gladstone in the future.

"This is a trial and if successful, which we're sure it will be, we'll expand statewide next year."

The closest vets participating in the de-sexing campaign include All Creatures Veterinary Services in Monto, Vet Cross at Gin Gin, Barolin Greencross Veterinary Hospital in Bundaberg and Vet Cross Bargara.

For more information and to find out which vets are participating, you can go to www.operationwanted.com.au or www.rspcaqld.org.au and follow the links.