When you purchase a Florida Animal Friend license plate, $25 of every plate sold goes directly to fund organizations across the state who offer free or low-cost spay and neuter services. That includes an important community cat Trap-Neuter-Return project operated by the Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Program at UF!
The project, “Targeted TNR for Better Neighborhoods,” brings together personnel from the UF spay/neuter program and Alachua County Animal Services. Thanks to a generous grant from the Florida Animal Friend (FAF) license plate program, we were able to perform an additional 625 targeted TNR surgeries at a cost of $40 each. In addition to benefitting the community, this project serves as a service-learning opportunity for veterinary students in humane and effective community cat management, providing mentored surgery experience to help produce practice-ready new graduates.
The project targets community cats identified by Alachua County Animal Services (ACAS) as needing attention. The Maddie’s Shelter Medicine Program at UF (MSMP) collaborates with ACAS on shelter medicine consultation, adoption programs, and student volunteer service activities. In addition, MSMP works with ACAS on specific community cat needs such as large groups of cats and removal of cats from sensitive wildlife areas.
The MSMP feline spay/neuter program was founded by Dr.Julie Levy, Fran Marino Endowed Professor of Shelter Medicine Education at UF. Dr. Levy has performed multiple studies of community cat management and served on the committee that developed national guidelines for spay/neuter standards of care. She leads a team of veterinarians and veterinary students who perform spay and neuter surgery at the UF College of Veterinary Medicine.
MSMP has a long track record of successful TNR projects and positive community relationships. Thanks to the Florida Animal Friend license plate grant, we’ve been able to take this track record to another level.
Think a license plate to support this important work is right for you? Buy one here!