Your Pets Will Thank You

Veterinarian Robert G. Chappell and Vet Tech Tiffany Walley check on ChiChi following her surgery performed at the Fairfield County Adoption Center in Winnsboro. Dr. Chappell and Walley, of Carolina Place Animal Hospital in Fort Mill, are performing low cost spay/neuter surgeries at the Center on Wednesdays for a limited time.

Everyone adores kittens and puppies, but adult strays are generally an unwanted, unloved lot. You see them all the time – darting from a fast-food dumpster, hungry, thirsty, scared, lonely and frequently in pain from injuries and disease. Since they aren’t someone’s pet, they become unwanted nuisances.

But what can you do? They aren’t yours.

No, but their mom or dad might be yours if you didn’t have your cat or dog spayed or neutered.

For a limited time, the Fairfield County Animal Shelter and Adoption Center in Winnsboro is offering pet owners in Fairfield County, Blythewood and beyond very low cost spaying and neutering for their cats and dogs. On Wednesdays, veterinarian Robert Chappell and his assistant, Tiffany Walley, travel from Fort Mill to the Center where they perform the surgeries, by appointment, for only $30 for cats and $55 for dogs.

“Anyone can take advantage of these services at these prices,” said Chappell. “It’s not just for low-income families. Our goal is to cut down on pet over-population and animal suffering.”

“The over-population of strays, especially cats, is a very big, costly problem in Fairfield County,” said Janice Emerson, adoption coordinator with the Fairfield County Adoption Center. “Every day, we get calls to put humane traps out for cats that people don’t want roaming their neighborhoods, and people are always bringing litters of kittens to the shelter because they don’t want them. While we would much rather they bring them here than leave them in a cardboard box somewhere along the road, the solution to unwanted strays is to have pets neutered.”

Emerson said most people don’t realize how many cats one cat can produce. An average litter is three to four kittens. And, surprisingly, cats can begin having kittens at an early age, as young as 6- to 7-months of age.

“Every cat the shelter can get neutered,” Emerson said, “is one less cat contributing to the cat over-population problem in the county.”

“This time of the year, the stray kittens that were born last spring are about ready to begin producing more kittens,” Dr. Chappell said on a recent Wednesday morning as he checked on his patients as they snoozed in the recovery room of the Center following their surgeries. “If we can make a dent in the number of female cats by getting them neutered, that drastically reduces the chances of over-population. And we want to help put that dent not only in Fairfield County but in the surrounding areas.”

Dr. Chappell said the neuter procedure is like outpatient surgery in human medicine. After making an appointment, the pet owner drops off the pet between 9-10 a.m. at the Center. Pick-up is between 3-5 p.m. that same day. Dr. Chappell generally performs 8-15 procedures at the clinic each Wednesday.

To schedule an appointment, call Janice Emerson at the Fairfield County Animal Adoption Center at 803-815-0805.