Project Start Date: February 2014
Project End Date: Ongoing
We were contacted in February 2014 by the Espanola Valley Humane Society asking if we could pick up funding of their free spay/neuter program for Rio Arriba County Residents. They were already providing this important service but had lost funding for the cat portion of their program.
We agreed to pay the cost to sterilize and vaccinate for rabies and FVRCP all cats belonging to county residents through their spay/neuter clinic. The Clinic had already been accepting our spay/neuter vouchers for cats brought to them by out‐of‐county caregivers and we were pleased to expand our role by including free countywide spay/neuter as well.
Through the end of 2016, we have provided 2,360 Rio Arriba cats with free spay/neuter. The Clinic provides us with a monthly spreadsheet detailing the cats that were sterilized and we provide them with payment based on their cover invoice. Recently they have expanded their service area to include Taos county and the Pueblos of northern Santa Fe county.
Rio Arriba is a relatively small New Mexico county (population 40,246). The median household income is $29,429 — well below our definition of low‐income in our voucher spay/neuter program. By providing free spay/neuter to all of its residents, without requiring application and pre‐approval, we reach a broader set of people than we would otherwise.