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Spay-neuter clinics fill up fast

Members of the Oregon Outback Humane Society and volunteers assisted in a spaying and neutering clinic on Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 23 and 24.

Staff came all the way from Bend to provide their services for the clinic, which reached a record number of animals for local clinics on Saturday, treating 37 animals in one day.

Each member of the clinic has a particular job, whether it’s performing the operations, transporting animals, or cleaning medical apparatus.  The clinic was staged at the Lake County Fairgrounds, which provides an indoor area for the animals to be held and operated on.

Oregon Outback Human Society’s Operations Director and Adoption Coordinator Martina Keil organizes each clinic, bringing together volunteers and necessary veterinary staff.

Linx Alexanderson, or ‘Dr. Linx’, as she’s known, works as the surgeon of the group. Alexanderson comes down from Bend to be a part of the clinics, at other times traveling to similar operations in as far away places at the Dominican Republic.

Jon Hoch, on the other hand, is a local volunteer who offers his services mainly for transporting animals that locals cannot manage themselves.  Hoch works otherwise as a seasonal employee for the Forest Service.

Other members of the team monitor vitals of animals after they have been through their operation.  Debbie Sironen, who often accompanies Alexanderson down from Bend, says she makes sure that the animals are never unattended until they’re stable.  “We constantly check them in their kennels to make sure they’re awake and responsive,” said Sironen.

Amy Hutchinson, who works as director of the Lake County Libraries, volunteers time to ensure the instruments used in surgery are sterile.  She puts together the right tools needed for each type of surgery – spaying or neutering, cats or dogs – and uses a pressure cooker to steam them for an hour.

The next clinics scheduled for December and January are already full or filling up, with over 90 animals on the list according to Keil.  Operations are by appointment only, so anyone in need of spaying or neutering should call 877-947-5009, extension 3 for an appointment.

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