PRC SPCA gets $20K from Maddie’s Fund

Published 5:05 pm Friday, October 12, 2007

The Pearl River County SPCA chapter has received $20,000 to help with its programs.

The money came from Maddie’s Foundation in reponse to needs exposed in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. Along with building foundations and the strength of the human spirit, the need for increased animal assistance and pet population control became obvious.

To help with Mississippi animal facility needs in the southern part of the state, Maddie’s Fund donated about $95,000 to six shelters in the area on Wednesday. At the formal presentation at the Gulfport Humane Society, the Pearl River County SPCA received $20,000. Maddie’s Fund was founded by David and Cheryl Duffield in memory of their lost miniature Schnauzer, Maddie. The couple, founders of the Peoplesoft Corporation and Workday, created the Fund with $300 million. This month, Maddie’s Fund donated to 23 organizations in Mississippi and 31 organizations in Louisiana that help animals.

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After Katrina, many pets and animals were left without homes as some people had to evacuate without their pets, while other people stayed behind because they did not want to leave their beloved pets behind.

“You can’t have an effective disaster response if you’re focused only on the people,” Wayne Pacelle said.

While the pet population continues to increase, pet owners are failing to sterilize their pet. Pacelle said focus needs to be placed on the problem of too many pets, and not enough homes. Funds received from Maddie’s Fund can be used in anyway the organization sees fit, such as spay and neuter programs or to set up emergency shelters for families and their pets.

Pearl River County’s SPCA received $20,000 from Maddie’s Fund, said Carla Gerrard, special project director in Pearl River County for a spay and neuter effort. She said $5,000 of the money will be used to build a county based marketing campaign to entice pet owners to get their pets spayed or neutered. The remaining $15,000 will be used to help fund affordable spay and neuter options for pet owners via the spay and neuter program.

Last year Pearl River County’s spay and neuter program fixed 3,294 animals in this county, Gerrard said. Of those animals, 44 percent were male and 56 percent of the animals were female.

“That’s pretty darn good for a small, little county,” Gerrard said.

Interested parties who would like to take advantage of the program should call for an appointment first at 601-749-3562. The cost will be $20 to spay and $10 to neuter a cat, and $40 to spay and $30 to neuter a dog. Coupons for the special rates can be found at the Pearl River County animal shelter at 1700 Palestine Rd. Deposits will be required.