Low-Cost Spay/Neuter

It is estimated that in order to give every cat and dog in the U.S. a home, each and every person would have to own seven pets. For example, a family of four would have to have 28 cats and dogs. We don’t know many people willing to do that!

As a result, every year millions of cats and dogs must be put to sleep at animal shelters because no one wants them. There best way to reduce the pet overpopulation problem and avoid millions more euthanasias: spaying or neutering your pet.

Pet Owners with annual household incomes of $60,000 or less  can purchase a low-cost voucher in-person at the Animal Welfare League of Arlington during our adoptions and front office hours.   Vouchers must be purchased by the pet owner and are non-transferable.

Household proof of income is required to purchase a voucher.

Acceptable forms of proof of income are:

  • Recent paycheck stubs (at least 3 stubs)
  •  W2 forms
  • Signed Income tax return
  • Unemployment benefit check stub
  • Social security benefit check stub
  • Workers comp check stub
  • Veterans benefit check stub

Vets participating in our year-round voucher program are Fairfax Animal Hospital  located in Falls Church and Caring Hands Animal Hospital, located in Alexandria.  Pet owners who purchase a low-cost spay or neuter voucher from the League call the participating vet to set up their own appointments.  Low-cost spay/neuter voucher prices range from $65-$170 depending on the type and sex of the pet.

If you wish to help us end pet overpopulation in our community, please designate your donation to the Low-cost Spay/Neuter Fund. You may make a donation by mail or phone or donate online, simply designate the Low-cost Spay/Neuter Fund on your form.  For further information please contact the Director of Development, Keelee Wrenn at donate@awla.org or 703-931-9241 x 220.

For questions about purchasing a low-cost spay or neuter voucher, please call our front desk at (703) 931-9241, ext. 200.

Note:Vouchers may not be purchased by phone and proof of income must be done in-person.

Here are some other area low-cost spay/neuter options that are offered year-round:

The Animal Welfare League of Alexandria also has a discounted program which is open to anyone regardless of income. 703-838-4775

Spay, Incorporated, offers a low-cost spay/neuter program with participating veterinarians throughout the Northern Virginia area. There are no income restrictions. 703-522-7920

Washington Animal Rescue League offers discounted spay and neuter services to everyone regardless of income or residency.

Washington Humane Society Spay/Neuter Clinic offers affordable sterilizations in the DC Metropolitan area.

Anicira Veterinary Center, offers discounted spay and neuter services to everyone regardless of income or residency (in addition, residents of Manassas, Manassas Park and Prince William County may qualify for financial assistance).

AWLA’s World Spay Day (Spay Month) Participation

Each year in February, the League also participates in World Spay Day (though the League celebrates the whole month of February).  In February, 2015 the League sold 80 low-cost vouchers to low income pet owners for  3 rabbits, 43 dogs, and 34 cats!  Vet clinic who participated in AWLA spay/neuter month in 2015 included: Anicira Vet Center, Arlington Animal Hospital, Clarendon Animal Care, Fairfax Animal Hospital and NOVA Cat Clinic.


So why do people still allow their pets to have litters? Below are some of the excuses.

“It’s healthier for my pet to have one heat or one litter before being spayed.”
False! Going through heat actually increases a pet’s chances of developing mammary cancer, uterine or ovarian infections. Spaying eliminates these infections and reduces the risk of cancer. Neutering also reduces the risk of cancer in males.

“My pet’s personality will change.”
True! It will change for the better! Spaying and neutering helps prevent a cat or dog from developing aggressive, erratic (or embarrassing!) behavior due to territorial instincts or the drive to reproduce. They’ll be less inclined to run away and roam the neighborhood, too. Neutering your male cat before he matures will keep him from marking his indoor territory by “spraying.”

“My pet will get fat and lazy.”
Wrong, wrong, wrong! Spaying or neutering is not the reason pets gain weight. It’s too much food and too little exercise. And their metabolism slows down as they age, just like humans. Their diet must be adjusted to compensate for this.

“Spaying and neutering is ‘unnatural.'”
False! Today’s domestic cats and dogs are far removed from their wild ancestors and don’t live “naturally” anyway. There is no need for them to reproduce to preserve the species; there are too many already!

“My dog/cat won’t feel like a male/female.”
False! This is only a human issue. Animals are ruled by instinct and hormones, not psychology. Spaying or neutering them will not affect their “self-image.”

So you can see there really is NO excuse for not spaying or neutering your pet!