The Lakes Animal Friendship Society’s annual community animal care event was a rousing success again this year.
The event is held by the society in partnership with the Canadian Animal Assistant Team, whose team consists entirely of volunteers, to offer free veterinary care to animals from lower income families.
This year between the main clinic at the Burns Lake Band gathering place and the cat clinic at the Burns Lake Veterinary Clinic, the society spayed and neutered 95 dogs and cats over the three day animal care event.
In addition to the 95 dogs and cats that were spayed and neutered over the weekend, the clinic helped in the checkups, vaccinations and de-worming of another 113 animals, bringing the total number of animals helped by the community care event to 208.
As well, the society was able to build, paint and distribute 10 dog houses to various families.
Compared to last year’s event the number of animals spayed or neutered is staggeringly low.
At last year’s event the society managed to treat 582 animals for vaccinations, health checks and de-worming, with 293 of those animals being spayed or neutered in the process.
Alistair Schroff of the Lakes Animal Friendship Society said that this was the first year that the event didn’t have to turn anyone away.
“This confirms what we expected, that the local overpopulation of companion animals has been brought under a measure of control.”
The next step for the society is now maintain the control over the pet population.
That will require ongoing programs and a commitment from local governments, including the Village of Burns Lake and First Nations groups.
For the society’s part they will continue to work on projects to help with the health of the animals, specifically within the education about proper animal care, compassion and bite safety.
“Education is the best long term solution,” Schroff said.
The society will continue to work with the Canadian Animal Assistance Team as it looks to address needs in other communities in Northwest B.C., including Terrace, Kitimat and Prince George.
“The project here in Burns Lake has shown that while it may be a big job, it’s possible, and the results are tremendously worthwhile,” Schroff said.