So, what are we up to? 10,000! That's 10,000 spays and neuters performed to date on dogs & cats owned by low-income New York City residents. We think that's quite an accomplishment!
When The Toby Project mobile van hit the road for the first time on Spay Day USA in February 2009, we knew we could make a difference--and we have.
In those short 3 years, we've increased three-fold the number of days we're out in the neighborhoods working our mission. In addition to our mobile van, we now operate a stationary spay & neuter clinic for feral cats. We're busy pursuing funding that will allow us to double the number of homeless cats we can spay & neuter. Expanding our reach in this area will greatly reduce the population of these homeless cats as well as the suffering they endure due to neglect and the harsh reality of their lives. Our short-term plans also include the purchase of a new mobile spay & neuter clinic to replace our current aged and tired one.
Funding for all of this is a ongoing challenge. In addition to cultivating the support of donors and corporate funders, we continue to seek private and public grant dollars.
Recently, Governor Cuomo signed into law new provisions for the establishment and implementation of a NYC animal population control program "to reduce the population of unwanted stray dogs and cats... reducing potential threats to public health and safety and reducing the costs of caring for these animals." It calls for the city to provide no-cost or low-cost spay/neuter services and to establish criteria for eligibility. The funds for this effort are pet licensing fees and unspent moneys previously paid by the city to a state animal population control fund. The Toby Project is being considered as one of the organizations to be awarded a contract to carry out a portion of these services.
2011 euthanasia numbers from Animal Care & Control suggest that our spay/neuter efforts are helping to inhibit the growth in the number of dogs and cats entering city shelters, resulting in fewer euthanasias.