For The Love of Cats

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Zimmer Feline Foundation cat patients collage

For The Love of CatsCare for lifelong feline companions

Zimmer Feline Foundation’s for The Love of Cats Programs promote the care and love of cats as our lifelong companions.

Cats thrive indoors and their caregiving needs are simple. Love them, feed them, and keep their litter box clean. In return, they will greet you at the door, purr while they sit on your lap, cuddle with you while you sleep, and wow you with their extraordinary ability to run, jump and chase things no one else can see. But, most importantly, they will show you unconditional love.

These special relationships enrich our lives, lower our stress and anxiety levels, improve our cardiovascular health, and reduce our feelings of loneliness. And we hope, with our free spay/neuter assistance, many more people will have the pleasure of associating with cats.

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"By associating with the cat, one only risks becoming richer."

— Colette
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Helping Pet Cats Keep Their Indoor Homes ForeverBy Providing Free Cat Spay/Neuter Vouchers

It is easy to see how it happens. You adopt a stray cat or the kitten of a friend’s cat, and before you realize it, she is pregnant. Once her kittens are born you find homes for them but if you do not fix mom quickly, you will soon have another litter to deal with. We hear this story repeatedly from caregivers applying for spay/neuter vouchers and we wish we could have helped them sooner.

But as important as cat spay/neuter is to stem the number of kittens born annually, it is even more important for individual cats. Once sterilized, they are healthier, better companions, and more likely to keep their indoor homes forever.

The large-scale push to fix cats actually did not begin from a concern over “too many cats” but from the introduction of kitty litter in the 1950’s allowing them to move indoors as “companion pets.” Families adopted kittens, but as they matured, their yowling, spraying, and kittening became more than what even the most loving caregivers could endure. So, they appealed to their vets to find a way to stop these behaviors, and the fix they came up with was sterilization.

Shelters (who account for about 45% of cat adoptions) routinely fix kittens as young as 8 weeks old before adopting them out. But the remaining 55% of pet cats (those found outdoors or passed person-to-person) are often left intact. Not because their caregivers do not understand the importance of spay/neuter, but simply because they lack the money to pay for it.

And this is where we help. We pay the cost to fix these low-income family pet cats. And by doing so, more cats will keep their indoor homes forever. This is the best outcome for everyone. The cats, their caregivers, and the communities they live in.

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of pet cats are often left intact by caregivers who can’t afford spay/neuter
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40,000 cats
have been fixed in
New Mexico through
our funding since
more than
12,000 cats
fixed in
before 2010
3,832 cats
17 counties
in New Mexico
fixed for free
in 2021

And Expanding The Safety Net For Community CatsThrough Nonprofit Partnerships

As effective as spay/neuter vouchers are, they work best with indoor pet cats that can keep a pre-scheduled vet appointment and live near one of our participating veterinary clinics. To help other cats (barn cats, yard cats, and feral cat colonies) – or those outside our service areas – we can partner with nonprofit clinics. They simply provide the community with free cat spay/neuter services, and we reimburse them for the charges they would have billed to the caregivers.

Collage of Woman with Cats

"The kittens are truly a gift of
love, laughter, and comfort. Your vouchers are a blessing. I was very concerned about how I was going to have them both attended to—perhaps get one kitten done and try to save up for the second.
When I found your number,
prayers were answered!"

— Di-An, Tome, NM Blue toy illustration
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Zimmer Felines on Facebook

When Sunshine went to the vet last week to redeem our free cat spay/neuter voucher, the vet noticed he had a pretty severe case of "chin acne".    This has many possible causes -- clogged hair follicles, eating from plastic food bowls, poor grooming, excessive territory marking -- and will usually clear up on its own.  In Sunshine's case it was more severe and he needed antibiotics to help him heal.  We were more than happy pay for that treatment too through our Veterinary Care Voucher Program.