Perhaps I shouldn’t wonder, given the potcake’s gentle nature, but most of the two dozen or so dogs crated in the front yard of Marsh Harbour’s Island Veterinary Clinic seemed surprisingly calm. Many adult dogs watched the volunteers around them with apparent interest. Six recently rescued five-week old pups napped in tangled piles, limbs splayed. A seventh slept, curled up in an empty food bowl.

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Some of these dogs (and cats) had been brought by their owners to the free spay/neuter clinic. Volunteers had rounded up others from areas with large populations of strays.

For many animals, it was likely their first time being crated — possibly even their first time at a vet’s office. But, peacefully and patiently, they waited.

Inside the clinic, the mood was much more energetic. Twenty or so volunteers from a variety of rescue organizations including Royal Potcake Rescue USA, BAARK, the Abaco Shelter and the Hope Town Humane Society, and three veterinarians — Dr. Bailey from Marsh Harbour, Dr. Dorsett from Nassau and Dr. Wildgoose from Freeport — ran an impressive and efficient operation.

The dogs and cats on the front lawn were recent arrivals, each of whom had been assigned a number. Corresponding paperwork was completed and attached to each crate.

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While awaiting sedation, Brownie gets love from a young volunteer

One at a time, the animals were brought to a makeshift sedation area in the clinic’s front office. Once the anesthetic had taken effect, each was carried into one of three operating rooms.

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Dr. Bailey performs surgery as two volunteer assistants look on

Post-surgery, potcakes and potcats were brought to the recovery area, where each was assigned a volunteer. Volunteers stayed with the animals, gave them TLC and ensured there were no complications as the sedation wore off.

Volunteers tend to animals post-operation
dogs from sandy point

Once awake, the still-groggy animals snoozed in crates until their owners picked them up, or until they could be released back into their neighbourhoods.

Homeless dogs – including that adorable litter of five-week-old pups — will be cared for until new homes can be found. If you’d like to adopt a potcake, contact Royal Potcake Rescue or Abaco Shelter.

Rescued by clinic volunteers, these puppies will be given medical attention and put up for adoption.

Eighty-two dogs and cats were spayed and neutered on Friday. At that rate, the clinic will likely exceed its goal of 200 animals treated over the three-day event. The clinic continues until mid-day on Sunday, April 27.

5 thoughts on “A Successful First Day at the Abaco Spay/Neuter Clinic

  • April 26, 2014 at 1:48 pm

    What wonderful work by wonderful and caring people. Thank you.

  • April 26, 2014 at 3:05 pm

    i am so very glad this clinic took place. initially there had been some resistance. just think how much healthier & happier these 82 will be!! keep up the good work!!

  • April 26, 2014 at 9:44 pm

    Truly an amazing effort on the behalf of ALL. Most especially the vets, Drs. Bailey, Dorsett and Wildgoose, who give so much for little more than the personal satisfaction of knowing they have done good deeds. Additionally, the volunteer surgical staff, those who tend and manage the tracking/record keeping and “intake” area, the volunteer “groggy” animal sitters, those you trapped and transported, RESPONSIBLE LOCAL PET OWNERS, volunteer foster parents, local folks who provide housing for out-of-town visitors as well as feeding the large crew of volunteers throughout the weekend, and more I’m sure.

    Then, there are the volunteer, non-profit agencies who care enough to do the fundraising, ground work and coordination to make events like this happen. Royal Potcake Rescue, BAARK, the Abaco Shelter and the Hope Town Humane Society as I understand it for this “clinic”. Major, major thanks and kudos to all. Rest assured that many of us who live too far afield to provide physical, in person, support will continue to provide whatever monetary support we are able.

    Abaco is most certainly setting an example for other areas, worldwide, with rampant feral dog and cat populations about how to bring the situation under control. It does take a community and Abaco repeatedly demonstrates the ability and heart that makes it a community that appeals to many, many visitors, second-homeowners and expats!

    BTW – I especially loved and giggled over the “high tech” duct tape number on the forehead ID system for tracking the animals!

    And finally, thanks to you Mandy, for doing such a fine job of documenting the event and spreading the word.

  • April 26, 2014 at 9:45 pm

    Mandy – thanks so much for taking time out from your personal project to beautifully document this event!

  • April 28, 2014 at 4:47 am

    The people supporting this are amazing. I am impressed by the kindness and dedication.


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