2016 Lower-Income Pet-Cat Spay/Neuter Program
We provide free‐and‐local spay/neuter assistance for pet cats living
in low‐income households.
Surgeries are done at participating vet clinics throughout central
and northern New Mexico.
To apply, simply call us and complete a brief telephone application.
If we can approve it, we’ll mail a voucher to you for each unfixed
pet cat in your care — usually the very next working day.
We have no waiting list and process applications year‐round.
After you receive the voucher, you may schedule your appointment with
any of our participating clinics.
Our vouchers pay the full cost for the following services — so if you
have only these services performed, there is no cost to you.
(If you authorize additional work, it will be at your expense.)
- Brief day‐of‐surgery exam
- Spay or neuter surgery
- Rabies vaccination given at time of surgery
- Post‐op pain medication when needed
- Taxes and fees
- Add‐on charges for in‐heat, pregnant and cryptorchid surgeries
Many (but not all) of our clinics will also include an FVRCP vaccination
at time of surgery and treat your cat for visible parasites if any.
Voucher Expiration Date
We ask that you schedule the surgeries as soon as you receive your
Although they carry an expiration date of 6 weeks from issuance,
that is to give the clinic flexibility in scheduling.
After your voucher expires, you may still use it during its 30‐day grace
period if the clinic needs more time to schedule you in or if your cat
is pregnant or nursing or too sick or young to fix earlier.
After the grace period, the voucher expires absolutely and cannot be
To apply for our free‐and‐local spay/neuter vouchers you must be the head
of your low‐income household and be providing lifetime indoor care for
your pet cat.
For purposes of our application:
- Head of household is at least 18 years old and the primary
earner (or spouse) living in the home and is generally the homeowner or
- Low‐income household is one where the gross income of all the
adults at the physical address combined is under $40,000 per year and the value
of the home is less than $350,000.
For most applicants we accept self-reporting of income.
We may require confirming paperwork if:
In these instances, we may ask for a copy of your household’s prior-year
tax return for income verification before processing and will hold the
application until the supporting data is received.
- Your home is valued at more than $200,000.
- You are self-employed or work in a professional capacity.
- Your gross annual household income approaches our $40,000 limit.
- You report no household income and receive no government assistance.
- Indoor pet cat is at least 3 months old and one that has free
access to your home at all times, is cared for as your personal companion,
and would unquestionably move with you were you to move to a different
It does not include outdoor cats even if they have access to dry shelter such
as a barn, porch or garage nor does it include cats living with you that are
It excludes households with more than 4 cats (excluding kittens under 3 months
that will be adopted out to other homes).
The 4‐cat total is cumulative to all applications we receive from any or all
of the adults in the household during the life of the program.
- Service Area.
Our vouchers are currently accepted at many veterinary
and spay/neuter clinics located throughout New Mexico in Bernalillo,
Catron, Colfax, McKinley, Rio Arriba, San Miguel, Sandoval, Santa Fe, Socorro,
Taos and Valencia counties.
Residents of these counties and those living within a reasonable driving
distance of them are eligible to apply.
We may limit out‐of‐county participation during the winter months if road
conditions appear to pose a risk to your keeping pre‐scheduled surgery
Reasons your application may be turned down include:
- You don't meet these eligibility requirements.
- Your cats are pure‐bred cats purchased from a breeder or pet store
— even if they were a gift.
- You intend to declaw your cats.
(We don’t support the practice.)
- You don’t intend to fix all of the cats in your home within the same
voucher time period (unless they are under 3 months old and you are adopting
them out to others).
As a general rule, we cannot process applications for caregivers who do not
fully cooperate with the application process, give us inconsistent, incomplete
or erroneous information, have received vouchers before and did not use them
or did not cooperate fully with the vet clinic, or no longer have the cats that
were listed on earlier applications.
During the interview, you’ll be asked for the following:
- Names of all the adults living at your address — in your home or
on the same property — their occupations (if any) and what their regular
gross income is from work, pensions or government assistance.
- Your physical address so we can determine if you live in our service
And your mailing address so we can mail your vouchers.
- An accounting of all of the cats or kittens living inside your home,
regardless of whether they are already fixed or not.
If you don’t receive your vouchers within a week of your application date,
call us to find out why.
We’ve found the local postal service to be spotty and so they may have been
lost in the mail.
And when we go to process an application, occasionally we run into questions
or concerns and hold your application for clarification.
Rarely we receive an application we are not able to approve.
If this is the case with your application, we’ll explain why when you call to
follow‐up and give you some suggestions of other ways to get your cat fixed.
In 2015 we received over 1,700 applications and 1,400 of them were approved
so the odds are pretty good you’ll receive a voucher.
Since we are providing vouchers solely for indoor pet cats and we require that
all cats in your home be fixed during the same voucher period, reapplication is
But — if you occasionally adopt a new cat you may reapply subject to the
conditions listed above.
It’s important to report all of the cats living in your home when you first
apply as we do not accept reapplications for cats that were in your home but
not reported at that time.