HSTB Celebrates Adopt-A-Cat Month with Half-Priced Adoption Fees for Cats and Kittens

The Humane Society of Tampa Bay (HSTB) is offering a fifty percent discount on adoption fees for all regularly priced cats and kittens during the month of June. In response to the millions of unwanted kittens who are born each spring and end up in shelters across the country, June is Adopt-A-Cat Month. For the past several months HSTB staff members and volunteer foster parents have been busy caring for more than 200 abandoned kittens, many of whom will become available for adoption during the month of June. HSTB is offering the adoption fee discount to encourage potential pet parents to consider sharing their lives with a cat.
“The bottom line is that there are still way too many unwanted cats and kittens being euthanized in shelters every day,” said Sherry Silk, HSTB Executive Director. “Dogs remain America’s most popular pet choice, and while we love dogs, we want to make sure people know that cats are cool too!”
Silk goes on to list some of the many reasons why people seeking a pet should adopt a cat:

    YOU ARE SAVING A LIFE: For every cat we adopt out, a kennel is left empty for another cat in need. We transfer cats and dogs from Hillsborough County Animal Services each week in an effort to save as many animals as possible from being euthanized.

    IT’S GOOD FOR YOU: Research shows that simply stroking a cat can release “feel good” endorphins in the brain. Plus, having a pet has been shown to lower blood pressure and the risk of heart disease.

    NO HOUSEBREAKING REQUIRED: Cats are very clean animals who, in addition to bathing themselves often, are able to figure out the litter box naturally. If you are running late one evening there is no need to worry about rushing home to let them out or take them on a walk.

    THEY ARE INDEPENDENT AND LOW MAINTENANCE: Because cats are naturally independent, they require little supervision once they pass the kitten stage. Set them up with a bowl of food, fresh water and a soft place to sleep and they are good to go for several hours! They make perfect companions for people who work long hours, live in apartments or simply prefer a mellow pet.

    THEY ARE CUTE: Let’s face it, cats are cute and cuddly. Their soft, luxurious fur, striking eyes and nimble bodies make them irresistible. Anyone who has ever had a cat curl up on their chest and purr away knows there’s just nothing quite like it.

The adoption special will be available through June 30, 2013. People who are interested in adopting a cat or kitten can visit the shelter at 3607 N. Armenia Avenue on Tuesday through Friday from noon until 7:00PM or Saturday and Sunday from 10:00AM until 5:00PM. The shelter is closed on Mondays. Our adoptable animals can be viewed on our website on our Adoptions page. Individuals can also call 813.876.7138 for more information.

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HSTB Animal Health Center at forefront of veterinary science with debut of Zeutering
UPDATE! Watch the news coverage!
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See Pictures Below
The Humane Society of Tampa Bay’s (HSTB) Animal Health Center will host training to certify local veterinarians and veterinary technicians in the latest procedure in dog sterilization, Zeutering. On Tuesday, May, 21 and Wednesday, May 22, veterinary personnel from local nonprofit shelters and private practice will participate in the training workshop conducted by Mike Braun, DVM, of Ark Sciences, Inc. The Humane Society of Tampa Bay will not only serve as the site for the training but will provide more than 40 dogs who will undergo the procedure and then be placed up for adoption at their shelter.
An FDA approved method, Zeutering is a non-surgical way to neuter male dogs without the use of anesthesia, that leaves the testicles intact. The neutering process uses ZeuterinTM, a solution of zinc gluconate neutralized by arginine. The method not only greatly reduces the cost of neutering, but there is little recovery time, no irritation and no stitches.
“The spaying and neutering of pets is one of our core and most valued programs,” said HSTB Director Sherry Silk. “It is the only sure-fire method of reducing the number of unwanted puppies and kittens who end up euthanized in shelters. Zeutering is just one more tool we can use to further our mission of ending animal homelessness and we are happy to provide this resource.”
Silk notes that some people are resistant to neutering their male dogs because they feel that surgery is too invasive or robs the dogs of their “masculinity”. But now, she says, they can no longer use that excuse. “Zeutering is an alternative to traditional neutering that may be attractive to some individuals who are hesitant to put their pets through surgery. The males can no longer reproduce, but they stay “intact” and retain up to 50% of their testosterone. It is a win-win for everyone, especially for the thousands of unwanted lives that will be saved,” she said.
Once the training is complete, the Humane Society of Tampa Bay Animal Health Center will offer Zeutering to clients on a case-by-case basis. Although shelter dogs will be used for the training, HSTB will not use Zeutering as an ongoing practice for the sterilization of shelter animals at this time.
Pictures from the training (hover mouse over picture to read the caption):
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Please note: This Program Is No Longer Available

They Say 60 is the New 40.
Add a Pet, and it Could Feel More Like 25.

It’s no surprise that having a pet in your life can help you feel healthy, happy and more engaged with the community. And they definitely help us feel young at heart.

The impact of pets in the lives of older adults can be exceptionally amazing. In the article For Seniors: Pets Are Just Plain Healthy, written by Ed Kane, PhD, we see some of the benefits to older individuals in particular:

  • Pets promote social interaction, decrease the feeling of loneliness and isolation, and increase morale and optimism.
  • Pets encourage playfulness, exercise, and promote laughter.
  • Pets satisfy the need for touch and to be touched, and give nonjudgmental warmth and affection.
  • Seniors with dogs go to the doctor less. Dogs are preventative and therapeutic against everyday stress.
  • For people aged 65-78, dogs are a major factor of conversations with passersby. Companion animals readily elicit friendly responses.
  • Pet owners have lower triglyceride and cholesterol levels.
  • Pet owners have fewer minor health problems, lower medical costs, better psychological well being, and higher one-year survival rates following coronary heart disease.

You can find even more articles about the benefits of pets to older adults at

So, what do you say? Are you ready to experience the clear benefits of having a pet in your life?

Our shelter is part of a special program, created by Purina®, which allows eligible adopters age 55 and older to adopt a pet at no cost. So, what do you have to lose? Come find your next companion today!



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Did you know that kittens can go into heat and get pregnant as early as four months old and puppies around five months old? If not sterilized, puppies and kittens can get pregnant and have a litter of their own just two months later. And it’s these accidental litters that end up in animal shelters with no place to call home.
To reduce these accidental births, the Humane Society of Tampa Bay (HSTB), with funding provided by PetSmart Charities, is introducing the Did You Know? Campaign, featuring a special $20 spay or neuter surgery for puppies and kittens under six months of age during the month of June at HSTB’s Animal Health Center.
While some pet parents may worry that their pet is too young for this procedure, spaying and neutering is safe and easy for kittens and puppies as young as eight to ten weeks old, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association.
“Many owners put off the procedure and wait until the puppy or kitten is six to eight months old,” says Karla Bard, Director of Medical Operations at the Humane Society of Tampa Bay. “But by then, it can be too late. By then, a litter of puppies or kittens can be born.”
This special rate is even less than the organization’s normal low-cost price and is available to all residents of Hillsborough County.
Pet parents who wish to take advantage of this offer must mention the “Did You Know?” promotion when they call to schedule their appointment. Appointments are available Tuesday through Friday.
Thanks to the PetSmart Charities grant, HSTB will provide 150 puppy and kitten sterilizations for $20 during June. Please call 813.870.3304 for more information or to schedule an appointment.

Humane Society of Tampa Bay Hosts Veterinary Interns from Developing Countries for Week of Hands-On Training and Skill Development


The Humane Society of Tampa Bay (HSTB) was selected to host two veterinarians for a week-long internship through the Humane Society International’s (HSI) Veterinary Internship Program. The interns, who come from Bolivia and Chile, are spending the week of April 29 – May 6 fine-tuning their skills and learning new surgical techniques with Humane Society of Tampa Bay veterinarians at the Animal Health Center. visitingvets1On Monday, May 6, they will accompany HSTB Executive Director Sherry Silk to Nashville, TN to participate in the Humane Society of the United States’ Animal Care Expo then return to their home countries to use their new knowledge and experience to help the animals in their care.

“We are excited to participate in this program and host these young veterinarians,” said HSTB Executive Director Sherry Silk. “It is thrilling to be able to share our resources at the Animal Health Center to help make a difference for animals in other countries.”


According to Donna M. Pease, HSI Expo International Coordinator, The Humane Society International Veterinary Internship Program has proved to be a wonderful experience for both the interns and host societies. In 2012, 18 veterinarians from 14 countries received internships. This year, 27 applicants were placed at humane societies across the United States. Some of the countries that have been represented in the program are Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Egypt, Malawi, Nigeria, Peru, Puerto Rico, Serbia, Sierre Leone, Sri Lanka, and Tanzania.

    Photo 1: From left: Dr. Nataly Ramierez from Chile; Dr. Karla Bard, HSTB Director of Medical Operations; Dr. Maria Barrento from Bolivia.
    Photo 2: Drs. Barrento (back left) and Ramierez (back right) watch as Dr. Karla Bard (front left) performs a spay surgery.
    Photo 3: Drs. Ramierez and Barrento examine a cat who is being prepped for surgery.