Free spay and neuter clinic draws in hundreds

INDIO, Calif. - Zaira Lopez got to Indio Civic Center a half hour before the clinic started, and she wasn't even close to the front of the line.  

"I woke up really early to come here because I knew it was going to be packed," Zaira Lopez said. 

The Lucy Pet Foundation hosted the free spay, neuter, and vaccine clinic, but you can quickly tell the event itself isn't the story. The crowd - the need - that's the story.

"It is really helpful especially for people who want to have a pet but cannot afford it," she said. 

People made appointments for spaying and neutering, but could just show up for free vaccines and micro-chipping.

"The more we can work together for the benefit of all the animals, the better off," Tom Snyder from Animal Samaritans said.

There's a lot of need. After we first reported the clinic a few days ago, hundreds of people called for free spaying and neutering.

"We know a lot of people want to do the right thing, but they just can't afford it. The need is real, the need is here," Snyder said. 

So the Lucy Pet Foundation offered to come back for future clinics - founder Joey Herrick paying for this all out of pocket. So a wait list got made.   

"We are trying to work something in March and April, a couple days to come back. We are actually trying to get a permanent Lucy Pet Foundation Bus here, five days a week. That's what we're working on,' Herrick said. 

At the end of the 2-day event, between all animal organizations involved,  700-800 animals will be vaccinated and micro-chipped, and 200-300 will be sterilized. 

"I'm very glad they're doing this. They are giving us an opportunity to give them what they deserve and need. That's all we want, the best for our dogs," Lopez said. 

There is another clinic tomorrow. Spaying and neutering is full, but you can show up for free vaccinations and micro-chipping at Indio Civic Center from 10-2. 

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