Helping man’s best friends

Published 3:35 pm Monday, November 30, 2020

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Local group offers discounted pet services

A group of Lincoln County animal lovers have started a service to help pets, as well as their owners.

Tuffy’s Spay and Neuter Clinic of Lincoln County has been providing some necessary services for the owners of dogs and cats to care for their four-legged friends since October of 2019. In that time, they have helped pet owners by spaying or neutering more than 300 animals.

“Anybody can come,” Troyer said, adding that the clinic does not look at finances, although they do provide discounted prices from what a pet owner would pay at a veterinarian’s office.

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“Even with a good-paying job, if you have animals, it’s hard to be able to afford $100 or $150 a pop,” Troyer said.

Costs range from $40 for male cats and $45 for females, and that includes rabies shots as well as spaying or neutering. Dogs are $45 for males and $55 for females, with dogs weighing more than 50 pounds costing $75. A fee of $10 will cover shots for Parvo and distemper, according to Troyer. She said the clinic also provides microchipping for $25.

“That’s a significant savings, even with the highest price. A vet would charge from $125 to $150 just for the surgery, not counting the rabies shot,” Troyer said.

Lanice Goodin, who serves as a board member with the organization, said the group wants to keep prices low to help people afford the services and control the population of dogs and cats in Lincoln County.

The idea to start the clinic was that of Troyer and Paula Grimes, who serves as president of the organization.

“This was our baby,” Troyer said.

They work with Goodin and other board members, as well as numerous volunteers. Troyer said the volunteers help prepare animals for the procedures by shaving the females, as well as helping with shots. Following procedures, volunteers make sure the animals are clean. They clean the animals’ ears, apply eye drops, clean incisions, and sit with the animals as they awaken from the procedures.

The clinic offers services at the American Legion Hall on East Main Street in Stanford, and Troyer said they typically host one clinic per month, but are doing two this month. The clinic currently has no permanent home, and the services are provided at the American Legion Hall on East Main Street in Stanford. Troyer said the organization is working to find a home, and she hopes to have some news as soon as the first of the upcoming year.

Veterinarian services are provided by Dr. Courtney Brockman of Casey County. Troyer said Brockman and her vet tech are the only ones who are paid for their services.

“She is amazing,” Troyer said.

Brockman could not be reached for comment.

The clinic is named for Troyer’s grandson, Colt Tuff Shaffer, who died at the age of 6 months as the result of a traffic accident in 2017. The idea of using Tuff’s name was that of another member of the group, and Troyer said it was fine with her. She said she loves to tell people about her grandson, and she’s glad to be able to do that while also helping people with their animals.

Tuffy’s Spay and Neuter Clinic is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. Troyer said the money to establish the non-profit status was donated, and the status was in place before the group hosted its first clinic day.

The services are open to anyone who wants to bring a pet in for services, and Troyer said they see people from surrounding communities like Danville and Somerset, but also from farther away, including Hazard.

“We know we’re getting somewhere when people call and say they got our number from the Boyle County Humane Society or Happy Paws, because they’re big and established,” she said. “One lady had been trying to get in with us for a couple of months. She’s over four shelters and she couldn’t get her animals in. She booked a whole clinic with us and brought in 50 animals a while back. She’s coming in today with 40 cats.”

Megan Gullett is a Danville resident, and she heard about the clinic from the Boyle County Humane Society’s website and brought in her dog, Harley.

“It’s a very good price, and they’re very friendly,” Gullett said. “They’re willing to work with you, and so I’m really appreciative that they’re willing to do this service for the community. I did some shopping around, and they are the most friendly and cheapest in the area.”

Normally, customers could bring their animals inside, but with COVID-19 concerns, things have changed.
“We go out to people’s cars now to sign them in, instead of them coming in,” Goodin said.

Troyer did add that some people are able to walk their pets to the door for weigh-in, but only if there are no other customers inside.

“We do all we can to follow the rules and keep everybody safe,” Troyer added.

The clinic often receives donations of supplies including paper towels, cotton balls, and other supplies. Volunteers are welcome, and should reach out for more information about how to become involved. Troyer said in addition to volunteers, they also appreciate any donors who want to help pay for services for animals of those who can’t afford services, even at the discounted prices. She said there are some who have helped financially, including one local lady who didn’t wish to be named, but had paid for several procedures for cats and dogs.

“We can always use volunteers, but with COVID we have to be careful on numbers,” Troyer said.

For more information about Tuffy’s Spay and Neuter Clinic, call 606-510-4393, or visit their Facebook page.