Another 22 animals were sterilised on a recent sterilisation day by Fisantekraal Animal Welfare (FAW) in Fisantekraal – totalling 268 animals so far this year.
It was done in collaboration with Envirovet Community Veterinary Clinic in Joostenbergvlakte.
“This was the third sterilisation day for the year, but we also sterilise between five and seven animals every week – paid by kind donations from the public in our FAW clinic in Greenville,” says Jenni Davies, spokesperson for FAW.
According to her it is better for the health of animals to sterilise them.
“It eliminates the risk of potentially fatal illnesses such as pyometra, uterine and testicular cancer; it also eliminates the chances of things going wrong during pregnancy and birth,” she says.
“People think their pets will ‘just get on with it’, but this is not always true. We see a lot of cases where puppies or kittens get stuck in the birth canal, leading to horrific pain and suffering and death, or they die in utero.
“Often the mother doesn’t know how to care for them so they don’t nurse them, or the mother feels stressed and eats the babies,” she says.
Sterilisation also reduces the risk of mammary cancer, prostate enlargement and cancer, and transverse venereal tumours and various other problems, she says.
“It reduces the possibility of feline leukaemia and the transmission of Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV) in cats, which is usually spread during fighting and mating,” she says.
According to Davies sterilisation also reduces nuisance behaviour like spraying (urinating to mark territory), fighting and roaming.
“Then of course it reduces animal overpopulation and neglect or abuse. Less unwanted animals mean less chances for unscrupulous or psychopathic individuals to find one to abuse.
“It reduces neglect, because the ones that are there already can be cared for better. We have seen cases where emaciated animalshave gained weight and flourished after sterilisation, simply because they are not having to produce and nurse puppies, and stress out at finding a mate,” she says.
A female cat can go into season from around four months of age, while female dogs can go into season at around five to six months old and have two litters per year, she says.
“It is safer for people if their animals are sterilised. The majority of dog bites are by un-neutered dogs – especially those onchains, which is something people often do to control them and reduce roaming.
“People also get bitten in the process of trying to separate fighting or mating dogs. Female dogs with puppies can also become quite aggressive as they defend their young; people can get bitten in the process,” she says.
“People in the areas in which we work are increasingly asking to have their pets sterilised. The people of Fisantekraal and Greenville are sick and tired of seeing the animals neglected and cruelty around them, and there is increasing awareness that reducing animal overpopulation is an important part of combating this,” Davies says.
FAW is a small, reputable animal welfare organisation that has been in existence since 2005.
“We are struggling to get to all the animals in our area, which includes Fisantekraal, Greenville, Klipheuwel and surrounding farms. Therefore, we unfortunately cannot assist with other areas.
However, even though we stick to one area, the animals themselves do not. People often give or sell animals to other areas, so keeping the breeding in our area under control has a ripple effect, she says.
FAW is in desperate need of dog and cat food, as well as kennels in good condition (for the many dogs that sleep outside in the rain). To continue their sterilisation programme, any donations are greatly appreciated.
“We also need volunteers to assist with sterilisation days, to help with fund raising or start a market stall.
“We also need people to foster unwanted or rescued animals while they await homes,” Davies says.
If people would like to assist in any way, contact FAW on 062 258 3547 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.faw.za.org for more information.