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New funds for animal shelter allow for spaying and neutering

The Animal Welfare Division of Oklahoma City will now be able to keep half of the city's animal shelter adoption fees, allowing them to offer a sterilization program for city residents, the Oklahoman reports.

The Oklahoma City Council unanimously approved a new ordinance that allows the Animal Welfare Division to keep half of the money, which officials hope will add about $140,000 to its budget in the first year. The money will allow the organization to hire a new employee to manage the spay/neuter program and ger involved with other community organizations to publicize it.

The new program seeks to educate the community about the benefits of sterilizing pets, and will also offer free surgeries to city residents. Last year, the city paid to have about 7,000 dogs and cats in its shelter sterilized, and this year expects to be able to perform the surgeries on 3,000 more pets.

In addition preventing the animal from adding to pet overpopulation and euthanasias in overcrowded shelters, sterilization reduces the risk breast cancer in female pets and testicular cancer in males, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. 
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