And would you pay $10 for a gallon of milk? Or $7 for a loaf of bread? What about dog food? Forget it!
Sadly, in rural Alaska, many pet owners must choose between feeding their families, or their dogs. And vet care? Except in a few hub areas, there isn’t any. If a vet does come to any of Alaska's 220 rural villages, the pet owners who need help the most often cannot afford it unless it’s free.
You already know what this means: too many litters, strays and abandoned dogs everywhere, increased exposure to disease for both pets and people, and the highest rate of dog bites to children nationwide.
But did you also know it is conservatively estimated that 10,000 dogs a year perish in rural Alaska for lack of homes and medical care? When I first heard this, I didn't believe it. But it's true. They include an untold number of unwanted litters that are destroyed; dogs that die from disease, starvation, and hypothermia; strays, abandoned dogs, and yes - even family pets if not tied up, who roam the village, and are periodically rounded up and shot. It is a tragedy.
The most effective way to help is for ARVO volunteer teams to travel to bush Alaska, set up MASH style clinics, and provide veterinary care onsite, right there where it is needed most: spay-neuter, vaccines, general wellness care, and education. For every single female dog spayed, there is a huge ripple effect by preventing the cycle of new births that she and her puppies could have produced over just a few years. Your donations are the lifeline to humanely reducing the number of unwanted pets in rural Alaska, and providing a better quality of life for many animals.
Thanks to your support, ARVO has been able to help nearly 1000 rural pets so far. With your help now, we will do more. Our goal is to provide 5 rural clinics in 2017.
$100 will sponsor 1 spay surgery
$75 will sponsor 1 neuter surgery
$25 will sponsor Rabies and core vaccines for 1 dog or cat
$?? Transportation is a huge expense, varies from clinic to clinic, and can be a deciding factor in how many clinics we are able to do.
To all those who have made our journey possible so far, you are heroes. Your continued support now is urgently needed. To newcomers, we welcome you. If you have ever wondered how you might help pets that are so far away, you can do so now by donating to ARVO. Every gift, large or small, has a life-saving impact, and is so very much appreciated.
Working together, we will make 2017 a healthier, more humane year for many rural pets whose suffering might otherwise go unnoticed. Let's not let that happen. Please include them in your year-end giving with a tax-deductible gift to ARVO.
We wish you, your famiy and friends, and your beloved companion animals, a safe, warm and memorable Christmas.