Pound Friends Seek Help With New Cat Clinic

Washington County Enterprise-Leader - - FRONT PAGE - By Lynn Kut­ter

PRAIRIE GROVE — Friends of Prairie Grove Pound re­cently asked lo­cal busi­ness lead­ers if they would be will­ing to get be­hind a plan to build and open a cat clinic to of­fer low-cost spay and neuter ser­vices.

Sharon Glover, a mem­ber of Friends’ board of di­rec­tors, said the non­profit group has only been able to raise $6,000 to­ward a $50,000 goal to build a new struc­ture next to the city’s an­i­mal pound. She has ap­plied for 12 grants but not been ap­proved for any yet.

“We need to get this done,” Glover told mem­bers of the Prairie Grove Area Chamber of Com­merce dur­ing a morn­ing meet­ing this month. “We have big hearts but small check­books. We need peo­ple with big hearts and big check­books.”

The bot­tom line, Glover said, is the or­ga­ni­za­tion needs the busi­ness

com­mu­nity in Prairie Grove to step up and help pay for the project.

In the past two years, Friends of Prairie Grove Pound along with NWA Com­mu­nity Cat Project have spayed or neutered more than 1,000 cats with its monthly cat clin­ics held in the city’s main­te­nance fa­cil­ity.

One of the reasons for a cat clinic, Glover said, is to ad­dress the feral cat pop­u­la­tion, a prob­lem that can be found in many small towns. She said Friends de­cided the best way to re­duce the pop­u­la­tion would be through no cost and low cost clin­ics open to ev­ery­one, re­gard­less of in­come.

The city has al­lowed the group to use its main­te­nance build­ing for the clin­ics but plans now are to re­hab that space and it will no longer be avail­able.

Sta­tis­tics show the cat clinic is worth­while and mak­ing a dif­fer­ence, Glover said.

“We’ve had 21 clin­ics in the last two years, 1,200 cats. Mul­ti­ply that by lit­ters and you can see how many kit­tens are not run­ning around,” Glover said.

From Jan­uary 2016-Jan­uary 2018, the num­ber of stray and feral cats has dropped by 40 per­cent, ac­cord­ing to Glover. The num­ber of feral lit­ters dropped by 90 per­cent.

Friends of Prairie Grove Pound has a 3,000-square­foot metal build­ing kit do­nated for the clinic and the city has agreed to al­low it to be erected next to the Pound. Friends es­ti­mates it will need $10,000-$15,000 for the foun­da­tion and $35,000 for the in­side of the build­ing.

The im­me­di­ate need is money for the foun­da­tion, Glover said. Sev­eral peo­ple have of­fered to pro­vide their ser­vices for the in­side of the build­ing so it’s pos­si­ble this cost can be re­duced by vol­un­teer ef­forts.

“No one in Wash­ing­ton County has this but it will not hap­pen un­less we can gen­er­ate enough funds,” she said.

When the clinic is fin­ished, the Pounds will have space for a low cost clinic for dogs and will have space for an of­fice, stor­age and a “meet and greet” room for adop­tions.

“This will give us a build­ing to re­al­ize our full po­ten­tial,” she said.

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