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Guest Commentary: Don't punish pets for being born

One litter is one too many. There are simply not enough responsible homes for the amount of cats and dogs being born. As shelter manager of the Lake County Humane Society, we've seen many of these unwanted pets quickly fall into neglectful situations, including animal hoarding and euthanasia at shelters due to over crowding.

It's very sad and frustrating, especially since it can be prevented by spaying and neutering.

When cats, for example, are allowed to continually reproduce, one female cat can have up to 18 kittens per year. When her offspring reproduce, the numbers add up astronomically: 11,606,077 cats can be born in nine years, according to Spay USA. This leads to homelessness, starvation, exposure, injury, disease, and possibly death of many innocent kittens being born.

Let's aim for the day when no animal shall suffer simply by being born. Every animal deserves a loving, responsible home. As pet owners we can all do our part to reduce the suffering of homelessness by simply spaying and neutering our pets.

If you cannot afford to spay or neuter your pet, please contact the Lake County Humane Society or the Northland Spay and Neuter clinic in Duluth. The Northland clinic offers low-cost spaying and neutering to low-income families. If transportation to Duluth is a problem, the Lake County Humane Society can help transport cats to the clinic when space is available.

If someone is responsible enough to ask for help with spaying and neutering their pets, I will do whatever I can to help them do the right thing. It's that important to me.

The Lake County Humane Society is also available when there are any concerns or suspicions about animal neglect or abuse.

The Society can be reached at 834-5806. The Northland Spay Clinic is at 623-6342.