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      How to lessen the number of euthanized animals

      Hundreds of cats and dogs sit in our local shelters looking for homes...most of them never making it out alive, after their previous owners can't get rid of the litter they came from, but some area vets believe there is no reason for these births to occur in the first place.

      "There's very little reason outside of championship pets, championship show animals, for breeding to occur, in my opinion, said Dr. Fred Freeland, the vet and president at Albany Pet Partners.

      Freeland says around 3,500 to 5,000 animals are euthanized in Dougherty County each year, something that can be prevented by spaying and neutering.

      "We have so many little ones that come into our shelter because people don't spay and neuter their pets," said Sherri Hendley, an animal control officer at Best Friends Humane Society in Sylvester.

      Everyone knows that puppies and kittens are adorable, but what you don't know is the chance of getting an entire litter to good, safe homes."

      You don't know what kind of homes they're going to. You don't know whether they're going to end up in the shelter, anyway. You don't know whether they'll be well cared for. You don't know whether they will be bred later themselves," said Freeland.

      In order to prevent more litters from being sent to shelters, the Albany Pet Partners offers both low-income qualified and standard pricing ranging from $40 to neuter a low-income applicant's cat to $100 to spay a large dog.

      "Our major goal is to provide people who can't afford services elsewhere," said Freeland.

      By spaying and neutering your pets it also lessens the potential for sick kittens and puppies that didn't receive the proper vaccinations.

      They can get parvo, they can get kennel cough, they can get distemper. Then it's costly vet bills," said Hendley.

      If you're thinking of getting a cat or dog, shelters offer animals that are already fixed so you don't have to pay for it, in more ways than one.

      To get a discount on spaying and neutering, visit and to adopt a healthy, fixed animal visit