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The late winter months of February and March mark the primary breeding season for cats, which leads to the dubbing of springtime at local animal shelters as “kitten season,” a time when the number of unwanted young housecats are abandoned in the wild or turned over to animal protective services.

“We can’t adopt ourselves out of this huge problem. There simply are not enough families looking to adopt a new cat or kitten,” says County Animal Services Director Dawn Danielson.

In an effort to prevent the flood of unwanted animals, the County of San Diego, along with the cities of Carlsbad, Del Mar, Encinitas, Santee, San Diego, and Solana Beach are offering $100 vouchers that can be used to spay female cats. The sterilization is generally safe for pets three months of age or older, and the county’s website maintains a list of veterinarians that will perform the procedure in exchange for the vouchers.

Vouchers are available throughout February while supplies last at county animal shelters in Mission Valley, Bonita and Carlsbad. Phone inquiries are welcomed at (619) 767-2675 from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday.

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