Animal Care Foundation
About Animal Care Foundation
Dr. LeeAnn DuMars, owner of the Pet Medical Center & Spa in Fresno, California, founded the Animal Care Foundation to provide low-cost veterinary services to economically disadvantaged pet owners in the Fresno area. Thanks to support from the veterinary practice and volunteer veterinary practitioners, the Animal Care Foundation has offered two wildly successful “Zeuterathons” to date, with plans underway for more.
In 2014, the Animal Care Foundation hosted two Zeuterathons. The first, held in March at a Fresno County community center, drew an astounding 100 dogs and a waiting list of owners interested in the procedure for their male dogs. The Foundation asked owners for a $20 donation for zinc neutering and rabies and DAP vaccines. At the second event, 32 dogs were zinc neutered, with the Pet Medical Center & Spa serving as the event’s major underwriter.
The zinc neutering events were advertised through flyers, media releases, and social media such as Facebook. Flyers were produced in both English and Spanish (click on lefthand document for larger size) to reach the all members of the community. The Foundation also relied on word of mouth and local community contacts to recruit volunteers to assist at the events. Dr. DuMars is now a certified Ark Sciences “Master Trainer” and is able to train other veterinarians to perform zinc neutering.
Dr. DuMars notes that that the future materials cost to perform a “Zeuter” (not including repeated use items) is calculated at $37.77 without DAP and rabies vaccines, and $43.81 with these vaccines.
The Animal Care Foundation reports that this “portable nonsurgical sterilization clinic model allows male dogs to be sterilized in large quantities, at low cost, in their local communities.” The Foundation focuses outreach on “targeted communities with a high incidence of unneutered male dogs, in this case Pitbulls and Chihauhuas. The community is predominantly Hispanic, and there has been a history of cultural resistance to the traditional surgical sterilization of male dogs.” The numbers of animals brought to the community’s first Zeuterin events speak to the interest in this procedure, yielding “strong participation results” and a “‘waiting list’ of low-income communities seeking low-cost services.”