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Oklahoma State University

Petco Foundation Invests in Lifesaving Work of Operation Catnip Stillwater

Monday, June 17, 2019

Pictured (left to right): Rachel Jones, Ali Fremont, Zach Ross, Suzanne Hailey, Dr. Kim Carter, Dean Carlos Risco, Loretta Lacy and Juli Alan, RVT.

Grant of $35,000 will extend efforts to save more animal lives in Stillwater.

Oklahoma State University’s Center for Veterinary Health Sciences in partnership with Operation Catnip Stillwater announced it has been awarded a $35,000 grant from the Petco Foundation to support its spay/neuter clinics for community cats in the Stillwater area.

The Petco Foundation investment will help ensure that the veterinary center and Operation Catnip Stillwater are able to continue to reduce the homeless cat population through a no cost, high volume trap-neuter-return program for the community of Stillwater and the surrounding areas. Operation Catnip Stillwater is run entirely by volunteers including veterinarians, veterinary students, veterinary technicians, undergraduate students, and other community volunteers. All spay/neuter clinics are held at the center’s OSU Veterinary Medical Hospital.    

“As a state funded educational institution, we are unable to use OSU funds to support this program,” explained Juli Alan, RVT, veterinary technician supervisor at the hospital and operations manager for Operation Catnip Stillwater. “Thanks to the Petco Foundation’s support, we can continue offering seven clinics a year where we spay/neuter at least 200 cats per clinic. That’s 1,400 cats a year that we prevent from reproducing more unwanted cats.”

Operation Catnip Stillwater is a nonprofit organization that serves Stillwater and surrounding areas in a 30 mile radius. In addition to spaying/neutering, each cat receives routine vaccinations and has the left ear tipped to signify the cat has been sterilized. Since establishing the organization in 2013, Operation Catnip Stillwater has spayed/neutered approximately 5,340 cats. Considering that a single cat can give birth to on average five kittens a year, that means Operation Catnip and its volunteers have prevented 26,700 unwanted cats in the Stillwater area.

For more information about Operation Catnip Stillwater, visit Operation Catnip Facebook page. For more information on OSU’s Center for Veterinary Health Sciences, visit For more on the Petco Foundation, visit and join the conversation on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram by using the hashtag #PetcoFamily.

About Operation Catnip Stillwater                                                                                                                    

Operation Catnip Stillwater is funded solely by donations, fund-raisers and grants. Operation Catnip loans traps to caregivers and volunteers providing specific instructions on humane trapping, holding procedures, and post-surgical release. At each clinic, cats are anesthetized and surgically sterilized, the left ear is tipped for identification purposes and vaccinations are administered. The cats are returned to the caregiver in the trap later that day. The cats are then released into their colonies the following day and the traps are returned.

About the Petco Foundation

At the Petco Foundation, we believe that every animal deserves to live its best life. Since 1999, we’ve invested more than $250 million in lifesaving animal welfare work to make that happen. With our more than 4,000 animal welfare partners, we inspire and empower communities to make a difference by investing in adoption and medical care programs, spay and neuter services, pet cancer research, service and therapy animals, and numerous other lifesaving initiatives. Through our Think Adoption First program, we partner with Petco stores and animal welfare organizations across the country to increase pet adoptions. So far, we’ve helped more than six million pets find their new loving families, and we’re just getting started. Visit to learn more about how you can get involved.

MEDIA CONTACT: Derinda Blakeney, APR | OSU Center for Veterinary Health Sciences | 405-744-6740 |  

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