Appropriate how West Texas is shutting down the sanctuaries


ODESSA, Texas (ABC Big 2 / FOX 24) – It’s a big problem. Many cats and dogs need a home forever. Now a local organization is helping to reduce the number of stray animals here in the pool.

Fix West Texas has always tried to prevent overpopulation in local shelters through neutering and neutering. Since it treats countless animals every day, it is said that it saves lives too.

“West Texas has a huge overpopulation of dogs and cats,” said Lori Vanhoozer, executive director of Fix West Texas.

To address this problem, Fix West Texas took many dogs and cats for spayed surgery. Vanhoozer said his efforts to control stray animal populations will help.

“We spayed and neutered about 3,500 animals last year,” said Vanhoozer. “We’re hoping for a decline this year, especially in the upcoming kitten spring season.”

The number of cats and dogs repaired every day changes, and there are plenty of people helping the animals in Fix West Texas.

“We have full-time paid vet technology, then we have part-time vet help. We also rely on volunteers to take care of the animals, keeping them warm, keeping them comfortable, keeping them company,” said Vanhoozer.

A high population of stray animals leads to overcrowding in local animal shelters. Adam Borrego, Head Surgical Tech at Fix West Texas, used to work at a local animal shelter and saw some tough decisions being made.

“All of the animals that got into the shelter had such a long time to find a home and if not there would be two things, pretty much euthanasia, so that was a big deal,” said Borrego.

While staff, including Borrego, came to Fix West Texas to prevent euthanasia, President Karen Patterson said it was heartbreaking to see so many stray animals in shelters.

“I don’t know if it’s worse to see or to know that if they are left in kennels they will lose their lives,” Patterson said. “Both are equally devastating. I have a feeling that all pets need a human, and every pet deserves to be loved.”

Fix West Texas is working with local animal shelters like Odessa Animal Control to repair as many animals as possible. Colton Barrington, adoption coordinator, said he sees hundreds of stray animals come in every month.

Barrington tries to make sure they find a home. He believes organizations like Fix West Texas make his shelter work a little easier.

“It’s really important to help us as if we talked about it to reduce the number of strays,” Barrington said. “If you take dozens of dogs with you to be repaired, that’s just a few litters of pups that aren’t raised on the street and brought in as strays.”

While Fix West Texas’ primary role is to reduce animal consumption at local animal shelters, people want to be able to have their pets repaired even if they can’t afford it from a traditional veterinarian.

“Number one we do is low-cost spay and neuter, we also do low-cost vaccinations, and we do things like kennels for outside when you can’t bring your dog in and a few things like that on the side.” Said Patterson.

While inexpensive surgeries help control animal populations and reduce euthanasia, it is up to the community to help too.

“We hope that only more people will neuter and neuter their animals,” said Barrington. “We hope that people can contain them and prevent them from being outside. I think the wilderness that can be called that, out in the neighborhood and such.”

But while there is still much to be done, Fix West Texas said it will still be here to help.

“We’re just identifying problems,” Patterson said. “We don’t care who started the problem, who caused the problem. We just want to be able to fix the problem.”