Awesome news: Houston will be getting another low-cost spay/neuter clinic in the spring. City Council voted unanimously Wednesday to give Austin-based Emancipet $260,000 for the clinic, which will be located at 4410 Navigation Blvd.
"The clinic will be able to spay/neuter 7,000-8,000 animals per year and provide approximately 10,000 preventive care visits" for things like microchipping and vaccinations, according to an Emancipet press release. This is definitely a huge step toward tackling Houston's homeless animal population, which is estimated at between 800,000-1.2 million.
The release also states that "the initiative was spearheaded by Council Member Robert Gallegos and made possible with the support of Mayor Annise Parker, Mayor Pro-Tem Ed Gonzalez, and Council Member Oliver Pennington."
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Located at Neighborhood Centers, Inc./Ripley House, the 48-foot customized trailer -- which the nonprofit was able to purchase with a donation from the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals -- will be replaced with a permanent clinic after 6-9 months, the release states. Emancipet aims to establish three permanent clinics in underserved areas of the city. (The date of the spring grand opening is still being hashed out).
"This is an innovative move by Houston's leadership to reduce the number of homeless pets in the city," Emancipet CEO Amy Mills stated in the release.
The clinic will have an 18-person staff and an advisory board. Emancipet states that its vets have "safely spayed or neutered more than 210,000 pets at little or no cost," since 1999.
As we wrote in February, city officials and Emancipet have been in discussions since 2013, and we're ecstatic that the discussions will finally turn into action. We hope that Emancipet will get the funding necessary to open those three clinics. That would truly make a huge dent in our city's homeless animal problem.