Jul 2, 2013 7:33 PM by Jessica Holley - email@example.com
CORPUS CHRISTI - Stray dogs and cats have overrun Corpus Christi for years, but the city hopes a new spay and neuter program will help solve the problem.
The program will first will target pet owners who live on Cheyenne Street between Agnes and Tarlton.
The organization, People Assisting Animal Control, blames the problem on irresponsible owners who don't spay or neuter their pets.
"It is a problem, we recognize it and we've got plans to try to reduce it," says Commander Todd Green, Corpus Christi Animal Control
Using a $5,000 ASPCA grant, PAAC and Animal Control will offer pet owners in targeted areas of the city a free spay or neuter surgery. The first targeted area is on the city's westside.
"We chose the street Cheyenne. There's been over 30 calls this year alone. It is a heavily populated area and we are going to start with one street," says Cheryl Martinez, President of People Assisting Animal Control.
Starting Saturday, animal owners living on Cheyenne will be given a week to have the free surgery done. If pet owners chooses not to get the surgery done in that time period they could face a fine of up to $500 by Animal Control.
"This is not an animal control or PAAC issue, this is a city issue we've all seen. If we work together we'll be able to make a difference and see the decrease of stray and euthanization in our shelters," says Martinez.
The grant will cover the cost of about 100 surgeries, only scratching the surface of our city's stray problem. If the funds are available, the city will target other areas of town with high stray populations like the north part of Corpus Christi.
PAAC and Animal Control will start visiting homes in the targeted area Saturday at 10 a.m. The free spaying or neutering will only be available for pet owners who live on Cheyenne Street.
As a general rule, cats are allowed to roam free as long as they have been "fixed", but the city requires all dogs to be on a leash or behind a fence at all times.