Pet owners line up for vaccines and vouchers at free weekend clinic
By Joy Purcell — In a scene reminiscent of Habersham’s mass vaccination site, cars snaked up the hill to the county fairgrounds pavilion on Saturday. Some waited in line for hours, but it wasn’t COVID vaccines they were waiting on; instead, it was pet vaccinations and vouchers.
Earlier this month Planned PEThood of Georgia was invited to participate in “Giving Back to Gwinnett,” a radio segment on Business RadioX.
The interview gives detailed insight into the vast array of services Planned PEThood of Georgia offers to the community. Planned PEThood is dedicated to helping pets and the people who care for them with innovative programs and affordable services that save lives.
Planned PEThood’s programs include operating a low-cost spay/neuter clinic that fixes 8,500 dogs and cats each year; offering low-cost vaccination clinics at least once a month serving more than 1,000 pets a year; and rescuing and rehabilitating about nearly 1,000 homeless pets each year. In addition to these critical services, Planned PEThood also offers community cat assistance such as humane trap loans, and its newest program, Go Fix Georgia, reaches out to rural and remote areas in Georgia in need to spay/neuter assistance.
The first 15 minutes of the interview are dedicated to Planned PEThood of GA, and the second half of the interview features guests from Camp Dream, another Georgia based charity.
70 cats and dogs in Lawrenceville will receive free spay/neuter surgeries and rabies vaccinations at Planned PEThood of Georgia on Feb. 25, Spay Day USA, thanks to a $5,000 grant from the Georgia Pet Foundation.
Feb. 25, 2020 is Spay Day USA. This national day is devoted to bringing attention to pet overpopulation in our country. When the day was created in 1994 by the Doris Day Animal League, 14-17 million pets were killed each year in shelters across the country. Today that number is way down, closer to one million, but there is still a lot of work to do. “We are moving in the right direction,” says Planned PEThood Executive Director and Co-Founder Elizabeth Burgner. “There are people and communities that still need education on the importance of spaying and neutering their pets and financial help to make it happen. Many low-income families love their pets, but struggle to care for them medically. That is why we applied for this grant.”
According to Gwinnett County Animal Welfare and Enforcement, a majority of their stray animal calls come from Lawrenceville, the largest city by population in Gwinnett County. Lawrenceville also has the highest poverty rate in the county, at 21.6%. For comparison, Georgia’s average rate is 16.9% and the national average is 14.6%.
While this grant will not solve the overpopulation issue in Lawrenceville, it is a start. This grant from the Georgia Pet Foundation will cover free spay/neuter and Rabies vaccinations for 70 animals on Tuesday, Feb. 25, which is Spay Day USA 2020. Appointments have already been filled, but there is a waiting list to be considered if more slots open up or more funding becomes available. “We wish we could offer free services to everyone in need,” says Planned PEThood’s Development Coordinator Lauren Frost. “We are always seeking sponsorships for free services, and our regular prices are so low that with a little planning most people can afford them.” If you want to donate to our spay/neuter efforts please visit our donation page and select “Spay Day USA.”
Planned PEThood of Georgia offers low-cost spay/neuter services year-round at their Duluth clinic. Cost for surgery is between $50-$60 for a cat and $70-$110 for a dog. There are additional discounts for feral/community cats.
Planned PEThood of Georgia has received a $5,000 grant from the Georgia Pet Foundation to assist residents in Lawrencveville, GA with spay/neuter. Lawrenceville is among the highest areas of stray animal calls to Gwinnett County Animal Welfare. Together, we want to make a real difference in this community by spaying and neutering 70 animals at no charge through this program.
The Georgia Pet Foundation is funded by the sale of special license plates at your county tag office. Their mission is to end pet overpopulation in Georgia through low-cost statewide spay/neuter programs.
If you are a Lawrenceville resident and need assistance spaying/neutering your personal pets please call 678-561-3491 and speak to a receptionist about this grant. Spay/Neuter surgeries for this grant will be held on Spay Day USA Tuesday, February 25th only and do have have special criteria you must meet. Thank you Georgia Pet Foundation for your support and efforts!
A few weeks ago we lost our original lobby cat, Biscuit, to cancer. Please take a moment to read this sweet obituary of our Biscuit boy written by our board member, Erin.
Those words frequently rang out in our clinic, beginning in 2010 when we opened our doors. Figuring that an organization dedicated to reducing the euthanasia rate at local shelters should practice what it preached, Planned PEThood founders Elizabeth Burgner and Lynette Thorpe Purves adopted a young orange-and-white cat from Gwinnett County animal control, back when the “live release” rate for cats was far below today’s 95%+.
They named him Biscuit and set him up as the official Clinic Cat, and he took to the job like he’d been born for it: greeting visitors, inspecting donations, and supervising the staff. He walked around the clinic like he owned it, and he soon revealed a talent for getting into trouble. Hence: “Dammit, Biscuit!”
Biscuit crossed the Rainbow Bridge January 7, 2020 after a brief battle with cancer.
If personality dictated lifespan, Biscuit would have outlived every human who knew him. As everyone who met him can attest, Biscuit was special–in all the best ways. He was even immortalized as a bobblehead and in multiple marketing promotions and materials!
“Dammit, Biscuit!” He reveled in going where he wasn’t supposed to, sneaking into the room where we keep our barn cats who are waiting to be adopted, the kennel rooms, staff offices, the supply closet where we keep the treats. He even figured out how to open closed doors by jumping up and pressing the door lever down with his paw!
“Dammit, Biscuit!” He LOVED food and treats and would chew open donated bags if we didn’t hide them. He would beg for the clinic staff to “share” their lunch with him–and was usually successful. He wanted to sample EVERYTHING you were eating.
When a friendly, laid-back tuxedo cat was trapped in a feral colony, brought in for neuter surgery, and took up residence at the clinic because he was too sweet to be returned to the colony, Biscuit found his best friend. He and Jerome had an epic bromance, cuddling up together and then wrestling for dominance. Our staff and volunteers are giving Jerome extra cuddles.
Biscuit developed lymphoma a few years ago–and with treatment, he fought and beat it. After losing a lot of weight and energy, he bounced most of the way back to his sassy Biscuit-y self. Recently, when he lost his appetite and turned more ornery than usual, we knew something was wrong again.
While waiting for test results, he went home with one of our longtime volunteers, Bob, for more intensive care and pain management–and all the attention he wanted. After the biopsy revealed a form of oral cancer, an oncologist confirmed that the prognosis, even with aggressive treatment, was poor.
He crossed the Bridge with people who loved him at his side.
Run free, Biscuit! Open all the doors. Steal all the treats. Eat all the food. Inspect all the boxes and bags. Welcome all the visitors. Sleep in all the beds. Go find the clinic cats who crossed the Bridge ahead of you, like Freddy and Raisin.
Dammit, Biscuit! You were a darn good cat. You left us too soon, and we miss you more than we can express.
We know many of our supporters loved and will miss him, too. We invite you to post your photos and remembrances in the comments below. We have created a Facebook album with our many photos of Biscuit also.
If you want to make a memorial contribution in Biscuit’s memory to help other animals in need, we will list all of the memorial donations on this page. You can make a memorial gift here.
We have an amazing rescue journey to share with you, come take the heart-warming ride with us. Make sure to watch the video below to see the full story in action.
Clover’s story began in a small rural shelter, where he was taken after suffering a horrific injury. Something or someone had sliced or burned the skin from his back, literally head to tail. This shelter, with no veterinary resources — without even A/C for the hot southern summer — was unable to help him. Can you imagine what would have happened to Clover without your help?
Thankfully, he had friends like you to rely on and provide him the help he so desperately needed. Today, he is safe, his wounds treated and his heart filled with love. Clover’s story has a happy ending, because he had friends like you to count on during the most difficult part of his young life.
Every day, your support makes stories like Clover’s possible. That is why we need your help now more than ever. Your gift today can save a pet from a life of pain – and open a world of experiences and love. By contributing just $25, we’ll be able to provide antibiotics to a dog or cat for a week, and with an additional $25 gift we can make sure that same animal receives the proper vaccinations, too.
Would you be willing to make a special year-end donation of $25, $50, or whatever you can afford to help save animals like Clover?
Everyone, meet Jameson! This little boy was crying in a storm drain for the last five days. People in the neighborhood started giving him food. They could hear his crying, but could not manage to get him out of the drain. Luckily, their need for help made it to Jeani’s desk. Our TNR Coordinator, Jeani, goes above and beyond for the community and its animals.
He was terrified, but now he is safe. You can see him purring and eating a big bowl of food in the video while he talks to Jeani about the last few crazy days! After his ordeal, Jameson had a wound on his back leg and tail. Yesterday his injuries were addressed with our veterinary team, and in a few short weeks he should be back to 100 percent. He even has an adoptive home waiting for him!
Thankfully, Jeani was able to catch him and get him to safety!