In addition to sharing excellent outreach strategies for the broad community, contest participants identified ways to reach specific populations of pet parents about Zeuterin. Read on to learn more:
Owners who resist surgical castration
Several organizations report that Zeuterin is a great option for people who resist surgically castrating their male dog—thus reaching a population of animals who would otherwise remain intact:
The Humane Society of Tampa Bay: “Zeuterin has been the perfect solution [for dogs whose owners oppose castration]. Once our veterinarians explain the health and social benefits of having their male dogs sterilized and that with Zeuterin the dog will remain intact and have some testosterone, they frequently change their minds.”
Portland Animal Welfare Team: “Zeuterin appeals to many of our clients who are resistant to surgical neutering due to cultural preferences or negative perceptions of neutering. Zeuterin allows us to alter more dogs, whose guardians we might not have convinced to neuter otherwise.”
Suffolk Veterinary Group Animal Wellness & Laser Surgery Center: “[Zeuterin] has encouraged sterilization in situations where there are cultural or personal concerns regarding surgical removal of testicles, especially where “street cred” or “masculinity” is considered important.”
Animal Balance: “As we have found on other islands, some people prefer their dogs to have testicles…The 65 dogs who we Zeutered would not likely have been sterilized otherwise…Pitbulls, Mastiffs and other breeds of large dogs were presented for Zeuterin...Zeuterin gave us an opportunity to connect with a sector of dog owners that we could not have connected with if we were only offering castration.”
Some organizations have targeted neighborhoods with above-average numbers of homeless animals. While many spay/neuter programs to do this, Zeuterin allows veterinarians to safely sterilize male dogs in the community rather than requiring the community to travel to a central surgical facility. P.A.A.C. and The Shot Spot (now Wellness on Wheelz) co-hosted a free Zeuterin and vaccine clinic for a Corpus Christi, Texas neighborhood; PAAC “put out fliers in areas that have high pet overpopulation and are target areas,” educating about both zinc neutering and rabies vaccination. The result: a line of clients over 300 feet long, and 108 zinc neuters in one day. The Sula Foundation has held Zeuterin clinics in New Orleans’s low-income Hollygrove neighborhood in conjunction with a farmer’s market. To generate interest, the Sula Foundation placed billboards in heavily traveled areas of Hollygrove, Treme, and the 9th Ward, plus left door hangers at residents' homes.
Spanish-language speaking pet owners
Several organizations, including the Animal Care Foundation, Humane Society of San Bernardino Valley, and Loving All Animals, have reached Spanish-speaking pet owners with bilingual signs and pamphlets, plus PSAs on popular local Spanish-language radio stations. They report that this outreach has drawn new clients who embrace the idea of sterilizing their dogs without castration.
Dogs with health conditions
Certain health conditions make anesthesia, a requirement for castration, more risky. According to the Humane Society of Tampa Bay, “for older dogs or dogs that have health issues and should not be put under anesthesia, Zeuterin is perfect.” Suffolk Veterinary Group notes that Zeuterin “has encouraged sterilization in situations where there was client resistance to general anesthesia, especially with small breed and teacup sized dogs.” Zeuterin also offers a sterilization option for pet owners or veterinarians who hesitate to anesthetize dogs under 6 months of age.
Transient pet owners
The Portland Animal Welfare (PAW) Team is committed to helping pets and people stay together by providing veterinary services to Portland’s residents who are homeless or severely low-income. Zeuterin is an excellent option for clients: “It is sometimes difficult for us to arrange offsite surgery for dogs living with their humans on the streets, and we often see transient clients only one time before they move on to another city. Zeuterin gives us the ability to quickly and easily sterilize dogs at our clinic the same day they show up, and the aftercare is simpler than for surgical neutering—a critical benefit for someone without a permanent home.”
Dog show participants
The Humane Society of Tampa Bay shared: “One of our staff members is involved in showing pit bulls. While it is acceptable in these competitions to have the male neutered, most people don’t do it because they like the look and because they want their male dogs to have testosterone to bulk up for the competition. She has been successful at convincing some of them to Zeuterin their male pit bulls. While attending these competitions, she always carries our flyer and encourages people to think about Zeuterin.” This principle holds true for other dog show competitions, as well.