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Wilson gets $30,000 grant to spay and neuter shelter animals

May 18, 2010

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. -- Wilson College has been awarded a $30,000 grant from the Burket-Plack Foundation of Philadelphia to help pay for supplies and materials related to spaying and neutering shelter animals.

During the spring and fall semesters, Wilson College provides free spay and neuter services for some cats and dogs from the Cumberland Valley Animal Shelter in Chambersburg and the Antietam Humane Society in Waynesboro, Pa. The procedures allow students majoring in veterinary medical technology to gain hands-on experience as part of a surgical course, according to a news release.

As part of the course, students perform presurgical work on each animal, including a physical examination, blood count, heartworm and Lyme disease test for dogs and a feline leukemia test for cats, blood chemistries and other tests. Surgery is performed, as well as extensive post-operative care.

The grant, which will be distributed to Wilson over five years, will help the college provide spay and neuter services for approximately 80 animals per year. In addition, it will help train approximately 16 to 20 Wilson students per year through the class.

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Cumberland Valley Animal Shelter's director of communications, Jennifer Vanderau, said Wilson's free neutering services are invaluable.

"It's such a great program -- it helps both parties," Vanderau said. "Students in the vet tech program learn practical skills, and at the same time, we get our animals spayed and neutered. Overpopulation in the pet world is the reason shelters are here, and being able to adopt them out already spayed and neutered helps cut down on the overpopulation problem."

The Burket-Plack Foundation supports the environment and the prevention of cruelty to animals.

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