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FOX 5 Medical Team

Clinic to offer free vaccinations, spay/neuter vouchers

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DECATUR, Ga. -

A local pet rescue group is offering free vaccinations and vouchers for spay and neuter surgeries this weekend!

Inside the Lifeline Animal Project's tiny, bustling clinic near Hartsfield-Jackson Airport, pets sleepily wait their turn to be spayed or neutered.

Lifeline's director of outreach Debbie Setzer says they operated on 30 to 40 pets on the day FOX 5 visited, and 30 to 40 more across town at their Avondale Estates' clinic. They believe that controlling over-breeding is the best way to keep Georgia pets off the streets, and out of overwhelmed shelters.  

"Part of it is that we know in Atlanta area shelters, 70,000 animals are euthanized every year," Setzer. "It's not sexy, it's not exciting, but we know that it will prevent, within two years, thousands of animals from being euthanized."

With Georgians' hurting, and money tight, Setzer worries a lot of animal owners may not be able to pay for things like pet vaccinations.

"I see how people struggle.  I see how the animals struggle.  I see a lot of really thin animals - and it's not because people don't care.  They can't afford to de-worm them," said Setzer.

Fix Georgia Pets and LineLine are teaming up to help. They're organizing "Healthy Pets DeKalb," an outdoor clinic this Saturday, where vets will give out free vaccinations for rabies, distemper, and parvo. Volunteers will hand out about 300 vouchers for free spay and neuter surgeries at one of Lineline Animal Project's two clinics.

On normal days, Lifeline's low cost spay and neuter surgery starts at about $35 for cats and about $65 for dogs. But for a lot of pet owners, the challenge isn't just cost, it's how to get the animal there for surgery in the first place.

Setzer says transportation is not a problem. LifeLine often sends out volunteers in vans to neighborhoods to pick up animals on  the morning of their operation.

"Then bring them to the clinic, they'll have their surgery, and the volunteers will return them in the evening. Makes it very accessible," said Setzer.

Local businesses like Inman Park Pet Works have been collecting food and leashes and collars to give out to pet owners who need them. Pet Buddies Food Pantry will be handing out supplies.

LifeLine says it will be ready and waiting Saturday, hoping to take care of hundreds of animals,

"Because we know that people care about their pets, and we want to try and help them," said Setzer.

You can get free pet vaccinations and vouchers for spay or neuter surgery at "Healthy Pets DeKalb!" The vouchers are first come, first served.

Event details:

Saturday, August 11 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Shoal Creek Park II, located at 3643 Glenwood Road in Decatur.

For information go to www.lifelineanimal.org.

To learn more about low cost spay/neuter clinics, go to www.spayneutercoalition.org or contact your local Humane Society or animal control.

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