Lend a Helping Hand for Jefferson SPCA’s Heartworm Fund

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If you’ve ever gotten a dog, you know that a lot of them get heartworms, and you know how much testing and treatment can cost!  The Jefferson SPCA is holding a fundraiser Saturday to raise money for its heartworm program.  Twist reporter Deepak Saini shows us why the shelter needs your help.

It’s always a busy day at the Jefferson SPCA.  Humans looking for a new family member fill the lobby and dogs and cats hope they’ll go their forever home.

“Each of these animals have a story and some of them we have to make up one on our own and imagine what they might be because if we find them stray on the street, we don’t know much about them,” says Jacob Storman with the Jefferson SPCA.

The shelter takes in 13,000 animals a year.  Most of them are dogs, but sadly, nearly half of those canines have heartworms.

“It’s mind boggling at times how many dogs that we see that have heartworms,” says Stroman.

According to the American Heartworm Society, our region has some of the highest cases in the nation.

“Because we’re in the South and its a very warm and moist environment there’s a lot more mosquitoes that are around,” says Dr. Jeff Schumacher, a Jefferson SPCA Veterinarian.

That’s why the SPCA’s resident Vet has to test every dog for heartworms before it can be adopted.

“Just because a dog goes out for 2 or 5 minutes, it doesn’t mean a mosquito isn’t there or can’t bite it.  A mosquito can get into the house,” says Dr. Schumacher.

Testing for heartworms isn’t cheap.   We’re talking nearly $450 per dog.  That’s one pricey pooch!

“Just in the last 2 years we’ve spent over $100,000 to treat the heartworm positive dogs at the Jefferson shelter,” says Stroman.

That’s why the Jefferson SPCA is holding its annual Bets for Pets fundraiser at Boomtown Casino.  100% of the proceeds go to the shelter’s heartworm fund.

“In the past, all we could do was euthanize them because it was cost prohibited but because of fundraisers like this, we’re able to offer that service to our adopters,” says Stroman.

They’re ensuring that happy and healthy pets will someday be someone’s best friend for life.

The Jefferson SPCA’s “Bets for Pets” fundraiser is Saturday, February 8th at 7pm.  News With A Twist reporters Deepak Saini and Erin Nicole will emcee the event.  Tickets are $30 in advance and $35 at the door.  You can get your tickets at www.betsforpets.com