Mobile Animal Surgery Hospital Comes To Region 8

June 17, 2004 -- Posted at 5:01 p.m. CDT

JONESBORO -- Having your pet spayed and neutered can be effective for controlling the animal population, but it can also be expensive. The Northeast Arkansans for Animals brought in a special mobile unit from Little Rock to provide services to folks who can't afford their pet's surgery.

Janie Baltzell laughed as she picked up her cat Sassy. "He'll probably be mad at me for a few days."
Sassy has had a tough day. He's spent it at the Mobile Animal Surgical Hospital, getting neutered.
"We have a lot of stray cats around our area and they're having kittens just one right after another and i thought he'd be one that wouldn't reproduce anymore," said Baltzell.
Sue Pyle had her own reasons for bringing her cat Rascal to the unit.
"Because I don't want more kittens....pretty soon you get one and then they have a bunch and then another one comes along and they have a bunch. Your constantly trying to take care of them and give them away," said Pyle.
Wannda Turner of Northeast Arkansans for Animals agrees.

"There are way to many animals. The over population in the South is drastic," said Tuner, "Every day 10,000 people are born and at the same time, 70,000 puppies and kittens like this are born as well. That means each individual has to constantly own 42 animals to keep up with the population."

While the MASH unit is on loan until Friday, members of the Northeast Arkansans for Animals are hoping to have one here in Jonesboro.
"We are in the middle of construction of our own mobile surgical/disaster unit. that way we can provide low cost spay/neuter on a more regular basis to the low income, disabled and elderly people," said Tuner.
The Humane Society of the United States estimates that between 6 and 8 million animals were euthanased last year.
"That's what this is all about is saving lives and make the lives better for the animals that are already here," said Turner.

The Northeast Arkansans for Animals group has only raised about a third of the money it will take to finance their own mobile MASH unit for spaying and neutering. If you would like to donate, you can call 932-1955.