Why the Animal Defense League of Arizona is Urging You to Spay Neuter Today!


Please spay and neuter cats and dogs now!  For the past few weeks, the Spay Neuter Hotline has been focused on getting this message to Arizonans. We feel the urgency because we see what’s coming!  In a few weeks the shelters are going to fill-up with animals, especially cats, Chihuahuas and pit bulls. 

With the community’s help, we Trap Neuter Return over 10,000 cats each year in Maricopa County.  We see trends that are fairly consistent year in and year out.  We’d like to work with the community to do some things that will dramatically decrease the number of unwanted cats born on the streets and in neighborhoods all over the Valley of the Sun.  We hope to reach that goal, by taking targeted action and by better communicating what we do and see.

We work with more than ten veterinary clinics around the Valley, and are sterilizing cats almost every day of the week, all year long!   February is the month in which “we” see the number of cats in heat and pregnant start to climb, and one of the months when we trap more males than females.  My hypothesis is that the tom cats are roaming looking for females in heat. 

On Sunday (2/26/12), at least six caregivers lamented that they didn’t catch the cat(s) they were trying for. In most cases they caught a tom they had never seen before, instead of the female that they had targeted and suspected was in heat or pregnant.  On a happy note one of those caregivers trapped two pregnant females for the Sunday clinic, along with five males.  She kept trying Sunday night and trapped three more cats, including the two females she was trying for,and another wandering tom.

I wanted to share some statistics from Sunday’s clinic to give you a glimpse of what we see.  75 cats went into surgery.  Three were already fixed, but had no ear tips; the veterinarian had to anesthetize them to confirm they were sterilized and to give them an ear-tip.  One of the previous cats had a microchip. Unfortunately, the owner never registered his or her name with the manufacturer’s registry. 

43 were males (including two previously fixed); 30 were females, including the one previously fixed.  17 of the females were pregnant. 71 feti were terminated.

To Recap:  February 26, 2012 statistics

60% of cats were male

40% female

59% of females were pregnant.

Predictions and Call to Action: We will see a higher percentage of pregnant females in March.  Please fix your cat! Please fix the feral and free roaming cats in your community. Now is the time!