The Bend Spay And Neuter Project announced this week it was awarded $7,500 to their PIT-SNIP program from The Humane Society of The United States. The program will give 100 pit bull-type dogs a free spay or neuter, rabies vaccine and Deschutes County dog license.
Bend Spay And Neuter applied for the grant because pit bulls are commonly found in shelters and are most likely to be euthanized in shelters nationwide.
"Locally, they are the second-most common dogs that enters the Humane Society of Central Oregon," Megan Wellinghoff, executive director of BSNP, said Tuesday. "Nationally they are the No. 1 dog that enters the shelter most frequently. We want to target the breeds that are entering the shelters most often and need our help most."
The overpopulation of this breed of dog was the inspiration for the program. The more pit bulls they can spay and neuter, the fewer puppies end up in shelters. Plus, lost animals who are tagged will be more easily returned to their owners.
There is enough funding for 100 of these dogs, and the spots are going quickly.
"it was very exciting when I walked in the office this morning -- our voice mail was full," Wellinghoff said. "We had over 40 messages and we had tons and tons of emails."
She was expecting to fill up 60 appointments by the end of the first day.
The hope is that people will use the free service and donate what they can to the program. That way, BSNP will be able to help more pit bull owners and possibly gain more grant money.
If you want to donate or seek one of the open slots, you can visit www.bendsnip.org or call 541-617-1010.