Kentucky counties and metropolitan governments can now apply for available grants to spay and neuter cats and dogs. The grants are distributed through the Kentucky Animal Control Advisory Board.

Ashley Thompson, director of Daviess County Animal Care and Control, said the county-operated facility typically applies for the state grant funding whenever it is available. Daviess Fiscal Court has historically matched the amount Animal Care and Control receives through the grant.

“It is not required to be matching, but (the state) gives preference to organizations that match that,” Thompson said. “Our fiscal court matches it every year.”

Grant amounts are also partially based on the surgery costs, and favorable ranking will be given to mandatory spay and neuter programs.

Thompson said Daviess County Animal Care and Control received $2,100 through the grant last year and $2,500 in 2020. The highest amount awarded is $3,000.

While organizations can utilize the grant funding in different ways, Thompson said county animal control uses it primarily to spay and neuter female cats and female pit bulls and pit bull mixes. Other organizations might use the grant funding to spay and neuter their own animals to try and lower their adoption fees.

“We try to use it for female cats that are public cats, to help get some of those fixed before they get to the shelter, and then we usually use it for female pit bulls and pit bull mixes because cats and pits and pit mixes are what we take the most in,” Thompson said.

The majority of funds for the program come from the sale of spay/neuter license plates. The board encourages Kentucky motorists to buy spay/neuter license plates when buying or renewing vehicle licenses to help fund this program. Donations are also received online or by check.

Thompson said certain grants can only be utilized for specific uses, but the animal shelter also uses donations to help pay for things like animal medical issues, spay and neuter and transport costs.

“Just different things that we might have needs for outside of the normal budget,” Thompson said. “We try to keep our budget for operational costs and salaries and the basic needs, and anything outside of that we try to get donations for.”

The Animal Control Advisory Board was established in 1998 by the Kentucky General Assembly. The board is responsible for making recommendations to the state agriculture commissioner relating to animal control issues, evaluating applications for disbursement of animal care and control funds, establishing shelter standards and creating training programs.

Grant applications must be received by email no later than Friday, July 15. For more information visit www.kyspayneuter.com.

(1) comment

Frank Sterle

Beautiful yet often misunderstood, prejudged and unjustly despised animals, cats are! ... Perhaps cats have a beneficial effect on the human psyche that most people still cannot fathom thus appreciate, a quality that makes losing that pet someday such an immense grief.

There's a tragic human-nature propensity to perceive the value of life (sometimes even human life in regularly war-torn or overpopulated famine-stricken global regions) in relation to the conditions enjoyed or suffered by that life. With the mindset of feline disposability, it might be: ‘Oh, there’s a lot more whence they came’. Yet, these mammals’ qualities, especially their non-humanly innocence, make losing them such a great heart break for their owners.

It was reported a few years ago that Surrey (B.C.) had an estimated 36,000 feral cats, very many of which suffer severe malnourishment, debilitating injury and/or infection. Yet the municipal government, as well as aware yet uncaring residents, did little or nothing to help with the local non-profit Trap/Neuter/Release program, regardless of its success in reducing such needless suffering. And I was informed that their “numbers would have increased, not decreased, in the last 5 years.”

It’s the only charity to which I’ve ever donated, in no small part because of the plentiful human callousness towards the plight of those cats and the countless others elsewhere. These include the cats whose owners have allowed to wander the neighborhood at night only to be tortured to death by cat-haters procuring sick satisfaction.

Only when overpopulations of unwanted cats are greatly reduced in number by responsible owners consistently spaying/neutering their felines might these beautiful animals’ presence be truly appreciated.

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