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Low-cost pet-fixing available to MediCal recipients

August 17, 2001|By RUDY YNIGUEZ, Staff Writer

Valley Veterinary Clinic in El Centro is offering low-cost spay and neutering services for cats and dogs owned by MediCal recipients thanks to a grant.

Dr. Steve Bowen said the service requires a co-payment of $5 for cats and $10 for dogs and there is a limit on the number of animals a person may include.

"It's a really good deal, and we're just tickled pink that an organization has stepped forward to help cut back on some of these unwanted pets," Bowen said.

The organization that stepped forward with the grant is the nonprofit, Alameda-based Maddie's Fund. The fund's goal is "to help communities stop the killing of ‘surplus animals' and guarantee a loving new home for every adoptable (healthy) dog and cat abandoned in our nation's shelters," according to information from the fund's Internet site. "We want to invest in the energy, creativity and enthusiasm of communities that share the no-kill dream. Our money isn't free — we expect big returns in the number of lives saved and we're dogged about results."

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Maddie communications director Lynn Spivak said the money comes from a Dave and Cheryl Duffield family foundation, founders of Silicon Valley-based PeopleSoft Software.

"They've dedicated the prosperity they achieved to the memory of their dog," Spivak said.

At the fund's Internet site — www.maddiesfund.org — is an image of Maddie.

Maddie's Fund is making $8 million available over five years for the program, which began in July.

To participate a person must display a MediCal card, and surgeries are only performed Mondays through Fridays. Additionally, the program does not include other services that might be needed such as vaccinations or flea treatment.

Bowen said he found out about the program through his membership in the California Veterinary Medical Association.

For further information, call Valley Veterinary Clinic at 352-1279.

Staff Writer Rudy Yniguez can be reached at 337-3440.

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