Residents encouraged to vaccinate, license pets

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Spaying or neutering your pet can save a person more than an unwanted litter. It will get residents half off the cost of a city pet license at the annual pet vaccination and license clinic on Jan. 31.

The discounted vaccinations and city licenses draw a crowd. More than 200 people met under the grandstands last year to have their pets vaccinated, and the same level of response is expected this year, Craig Police Department Animal Control Officer Kathie Johnson said.

Residents can save up to $10 over the cost of regular vaccinations by taking advantage of the clinic.

"We do this to get more people to vaccinate animals," Johnson said. "It seems to work."

Staff and doctors from McCandless Animal Hospital will be on hand to administer the vaccinations. The Humane Society of Moffat County will be hosting a pet supply and food drive and the Western Agility Group of Northwest Colorado will be handing out information and testing dogs to earn a Canine Good Citizen certificate.

City licenses will be offered at half their regular cost -- $5 if the animal is not spayed or neutered and $1 if they are. Residents are asked to bring proof that their pets have been spayed or neutered to take advantage of the discount.

The clinic provides several important benefits, the first being to prevent the spread of diseases among animals, Johnson said.

"Keep your pets healthy and prevent disease," she said. "There are some pretty icky diseases out there."

There's usually a line to get vaccinations during the three-hour clinic and Johnson expects it to be busier this year because staff from only one of Craig's veterinary offices will be on hand instead of the usual two. To reduce the impact, McCandless Animal Hospital will be offering the discounts the week preceding the clinic.

The Western Agility Group of Northwest Colorado will be offering Canine Good Citizen certificates as a fund-raiser during the clinic. The cost has not yet been determined.

To earn a certificate, dogs will be tested on a variety of skills, their attitude when greeting strangers or other dogs and their obedience of basic commands.

"A little bit of obedience goes a long way and that's what we're trying to get across," certified tester Glenna Grandbouche said. "If you have dogs, you have to be responsible pet owners and part of that responsibility is teaching them obedience."

The Western Agility Group offers dog obedience and agility training. They hope enough interest is garnered to host one in the spring.

The group will also host a dog agility trial in Maybell this summer and funds raised through the canine testing will be put toward that event.

Christina M. Currie can be reached at 824-7031, Ext. 210 or by e-mail at ccurrie@craigdailypress.com.

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