Cat Snip

Bob Barker famously signed off from each episode of The Price Is Right by reminding his audience to help control the pet population by having pets spayed or neutered. Now Barker’s message is more than friendly advice—it’s the law.

As of May 19, Clark County joins the cities of Las Vegas and North Las Vegas in enacting a mandatory spay-and-neuter ordinance. Once the new law goes into effect, most dogs and cats in the Valley older than four months must be spayed or neutered. (The city of Henderson is working on a similar law.)

“This community’s pet overpopulation problem is forcing our shelters to kill more than 30,000 cats and dogs every year,” says Joe Boteilho, the county’s chief code enforcement officer. “Almost 90 percent of the pets entering the shelter have not been spayed or neutered.”

Sterilizing pets has been the law in Las Vegas since April 1, but city spokesman Jace Radke says no citations have been issued to date.

Violations are a misdemeanor, says county spokesman Dan Kulin, which means offenders are subject to fines: $225 for the first offense, $500 for the second and $1,000 for any subsequent offenses. To help Clark County residents comply, Heaven Can Wait Sanctuary (227-5555) is offering discounted spay-and-neuter services to pet owners living in unincorporated Clark County who are on public assistance or Medicaid: $30 for the first dog per household, $75 for every additional dog and $20 for all cats. Pet owners who do not qualify for financial assistance pay full price, which starts at $115 for dogs and $50 for cats.

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