University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Humane Society announce new partnership

Thursday, February 6, 2014

The University of Minnesota’s College of Veterinary Medicine (CVM) will be joining forces with Animal Humane Society (AHS) to offer reduced-cost spay/neuter surgeries to cats and dogs being cared for by rescue organizations and animals awaiting adoption at AHS.

Fourth-year veterinary students at the U of M will complete a rotation at the Animal Humane Society’s Golden Valley location to provide this much needed service.

For more than fifteen years, U of M veterinary students have worked with several pet rescue organizations in the Twin Cities to provide sterilization surgeries. This new collaboration with Animal Humane Society expands on these services, providing opportunities for more rescue organizations to obtain surgeries at a reduced fee.

The students will work under the direct supervision of a University of Minnesota clinical veterinarians and a team of veterinary technicians.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for veterinary students in their last year of training to gain surgical training by working in a surgical clinical setting, much like what they will encounter in private practice,” said Jonna Swanson, D.V.M., director of the College of Veterinary Medicine’s Shelter Medicine Program and former staff veterinarian at Animal Humane Society. “U of M students will gain experience while playing a vital role in helping reduce pet overpopulation.”

According to Kathie Johnson, Animal Humane Society director of operations, “We are happy to be partnering with the University of Minnesota. This collaboration will benefit AHS because students will graduate with a better understanding of the realities of shelter medicine and the needs in our communities. It will also help the ‘U’ by better preparing its students to work in the community and provide spay/neuter services to their clients.”

Spay and neuter surgeries are an important component in reducing pet overpopulation and preventing unwanted litters. The impact of foregoing spay or neuter surgery is significant. If one dog or cat and its puppies or kittens live without the surgery, more than 67,000 homeless dogs can result within six years and more than 11 million homeless cats can result within nine years. In addition to preventing overpopulation and homeless animals, spayed or neutered pets are less prone to diseases including breast cancer in females and testicular cancer or prostate enlargement in males.

For animal rescue organizations in need of spay or neuter services please contact Samantha Clark at