Does the Gila River Animal Control Program deal with all animal problems?
Unfortunately, we do not deal with all animal related problems. The Domestic Animal Ordinance, which Animal Control enforces, specifically allows us to deal with only live domestic animals (dogs & cats). As a result, Animal Control Officers have been trained specifically in dealing with domestic animals issues (dogs & cats).
How old does a dog or cat have to be for a Rabies Vaccination?
According to the Gila River Animal Ordinance, all dogs and cats age 4 months and older must have a rabies vaccination and a license tag.
The vaccine manufacturer suggests cats & dogs can be given the rabies vaccination at the age of 3 months. The Animal Control Program offers the rabies vaccination for these animals if the owner requests it.
How old does a dog or cat have to be for a health vaccination (5 in 1 for dogs, 3 in 1 for cats)?
It is recommended all puppies and kittens start the puppy/kitten series of vaccinations as soon as possible after the puppies/kittens have been weaned (taken away from the mother). This is usually when the animals are approximately 8 weeks of age. They will be given a series of shots approximately every 3 to 4 weeks for a total of 3 shots.
How old does my dog or cat have to be before it can be Spayed or Neutered?
Most veterinarians will not sterilize a dog or cat under the age of 6 months. Most veterinarians feel at this age the animal has physically matured to handle the operation and less risk of complications.
However, there are veterinarians throughout Arizona that perform prepubescent sterilization on kittens and puppies as young as 6 weeks old. There has been many dogs and cats sterilized at this early age that are just as healthy as ones sterilized at an older age. Consult your veterinarian for his/her opinion and recommendation.
Can I give my pets the vaccines myself?
You are able to give the health vaccine. The vaccine has a variety of names: Health series, puppy shots, disease shots, parvo vaccine and dog shots. These can be purchased and given with out a professional person administering.
Rabies vaccine has to be given by a professional person or the vaccine is not valid. A Rabies Certificate is filled out with the animals’ description as well as the animal owners.
Why do I have to license my dog or cat?
This is to ensure that an owned animal has the vaccination against rabies and the animal is in good health. Gila River Indian Community Animal Control Ordinance 16.704 states, “A Domestic Animal owner or Harborer of any Domestic Animal four months of age or older residing within the Reservation shall obtain a Domestic Animal License from the Animal Control Pro- gram. Before obtaining a license pursuant to this section, the Domestic Animal owner or Harborer shall show proof of current rabies vaccination.”
Why/why not spay/neuter my pet?
“Spay, Neuter, alter, fixing, sterilizing”. These are all names that mean “surgical sterilization that prevents procreation.”
Seven dogs and cats are born every day for each person born in the US. Of those, only 1 in 5 puppies and kittens stay in their original home for his/her natural lifetime. The remaining 4 are abandoned to the streets or end up at a shelter.
Source: Humane Society of the United States.
Each day 10,000 humans are born in the U.S. - and each day 70,000 puppies and kittens are born. As long as these birth rates exist, there will never be enough homes for all the animals.
Source: Spay USA.
In short terms… there aren’t enough homes or people, for all the dogs and cats that are born. An estimated 6 to 8 million dogs and cats are euthanized in shelters each year. Millions more are abandoned, only to suffer from illness or injury before dying.
Source: Doris Day Animal League.
Over $2 billion is spent annually by local governments to shelter and ultimately destroy 8-10 million adoptable dogs and cats due of shortage of homes.
Source: Business Wire Features
Altered pets are healthier pets. Spaying and neutering helps to lessen the chances of females getting mammary tumors, uterine infections and cancers. Males have less risk of testicular cancer, prostate cancer. In some cases roaming and aggression can cause a dog to be injured by cars or other dogs.
Is it true that fixing your dogs and cats can make them get fat?
This does not cause weight gain. Normal healthy animals can gain weight after surgery because they no longer have the urge to roam for a mate. Roaming animals have lack of food that can cause malnourishment and losing weight. Altered animals are more likely to stay close to home and have regular feedings.
How long does my pet have to stay at the clinic when they get fixed?
In most cases, depending on the clinic, they will be home that same afternoon, along with home care instructions. The surgery takes approximately 15 minutes to an hour depending on sex, age, pet’s health, and their normal feeding in 12 to 24 hours and restricted activity for a few days, and the Incision site to be checked daily with follow up care if needed.
When and how long does a female dog or cat go into season (heat cycle)? How do I know when they are in this season? How long are they pregnant?
Cycles vary from breed and the individuality of the dog. But the first season may occur around four to fourteen months of age. Dogs usually go into season twice a year. There are different stages of the cycle that show signs.
Discharge and males attracted to the female but is not ready to mate usually lasts around four to twenty days then swollen genitalia and mating will last about one to two weeks, and sexual inactivity for about four to six weeks. If she is pregnant that will be 57 to 63 days. The cycles may occur around six to twelve months of age. Cats can go back into a cycle in one to three weeks if not mated in the previous cycle. In cats there are not many signs as the dog but the female will be attacked to the male but not willing to mate, this lasts about three days. When the female is ready to accept the male she will show signs by crying more, rolling around and elevating the hind quarters. People may mistake this as the cat being in pain. This cycle lasts about one to two weeks; if she is mated her pregnancy will last about 57 to 63 days.