Cat and dog owners who have trouble budgeting for their pets’ vaccinations and health tests will soon have a more affordable option.
On July 29, the Humane Society of Union County will launch Wellness Wednesdays at its low-cost spay-and-neuter clinic at 4015 Waxhaw Highway in Monroe.
“We felt there was a real need for this, and decided just to jump in,” said Barbara Blair, president of Humane Society of Union County.
She said some pet owners struggle to pay for basic veterinary services for their cats and dogs, and providing a lower-cost option will help them keep their pets healthier – which will also benefit the larger community.
Wellness Wednesdays’ services are not intended for sick pets, which should be taken to a full-service veterinary clinic, says Barbara Blair, president of Humane Society of Union County.
Blair said the clinic’s veterinarian, Dr. Laurence Toyer, will provide a basic, courtesy exam of each pet before giving the vaccines and tests the owner requests.
Wellness Wednesdays’ services are not intended for sick pets, which should be taken to a full-service veterinary clinic, she said.
Because the clinic doesn’t charge for an office visit, vaccines and tests cost less than what is typically charged at a standard veterinary clinic, she said. Most one-year vaccines, for example, cost $12 at the clinic.
Appointments are required, and the clinic will begin making appointments July 22 for the first Wellness Wednesday. Blair said at some point they may accept walk-ins on Wellness Wednesdays, but they want to evaluate how the first few months go.
Blair said the spay-and-neuter clinic, which opened in 2011, is designed to help those who struggle financially and are too strapped for cash to pay for the surgery that would keep their pets from reproducing.
We have a large majority of customers who just choose to save money by using the clinic, she said.
Wellness Wednesdays will help Toyer and the clinic’s staff identify pets that should be spayed or neutered when they are brought in for shots or tests.
In December, the Humane Society of Union County started a “Spay-it-forward” program for donations to help pet owners who have trouble affording even the discounted prices offered through the clinic. Blair said the Spay-it-forward program has helped 700 additional pets get spayed or neutered.
“We may have to start a shot-it-forward program,” she said, referring to the vaccinations offered through Wellness Wednesday.
“We’re hoping the community will embrace it,” Blair said. “And that, of course, will allow us to help those who truly cannot afford it.”
Jane Duckwall is a freelance writer. Have a story idea for Jane? Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information about Wellness Wednesday, go to http://www.hs-uc.org/