There’s no dancing around it: The fix is in.
That was the message when two larger-than-life dancing condoms (correction: PETA members in pink and blue jimmy hat costumes) hit the streets in Milwaukee and Indianapolis recently. They flashed a sign that read, “Condoms Won’t Work: Fix Your Dog/Cat!” and handed out leaflets explaining why we should get our animal companions spayed or neutered.
And why is that? In a word, overpopulation. There are too many cats and dogs, and it’s a crisis—and spaying and neutering is the single most important thing that we can do to help end it. Animals can’t wear condoms, so it’s up to us to take responsibility and get them “fixed.”
Every day, some 70,000 kittens and puppies are born in the U.S., and every year, more than 6 million lost, abandoned, or unwanted cats and dogs arrive at animal shelters. Because there aren’t nearly enough loving homes for all of them, about half are euthanized. Many are young, healthy, and adoptable. Spaying and neutering are the keys to preventing more animals from being born only to end up homeless.
Sterilized animals also live longer, happier lives. Spaying eliminates the risk of developing uterine cancer and greatly reduces the risk of developing mammary cancer. Neutering eliminates the risk of developing testicular cancer, reduces the likelihood of developing prostate cancer, and curtails the urge to roam and fight. Altered animals also aren’t as likely to contract feline AIDs and feline leukemia—deadly, contagious diseases that are spread through bodily fluids.
Preventing unwanted animals from being born also means there will be fewer left on the streets to fend for themselves. Abandoned dogs and cats face starvation and disease. They are struck by cars and trucks, have no protection from extreme weather, and are vulnerable to cruel humans who shoot, stab, and poison them and even set them on fire. Some are sold to laboratories or to dogfighters who use them as “bait.”
The best conceivable solutions are to spay or neuter companion animals and never buy them from a breeder or pet store.
What You Can Do
Have your cat or dog spayed or neutered. You can also sign PETA’s pledge to end animal homelessness and lobby elected officials to pass mandatory spay/neuter laws if your area doesn’t already have them. And if you’re ready to share your home with a lifetime friend, adopt from an animal shelter, where countless deserving dogs and cats are waiting to be loved.