Bob Barker foundation provides money for free sterilization of pitbulls
Tessa waits to be picked up by her owners after getting spayed as part of the Manchester Animal Shelter's free fix-a-pit program. (DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER)
Londonderry residentsTimothy Stewart and his son Mason, 8, greet Lola after she was spayed as part of the Manchester Animal Shelter's free fix-a-pit program. (DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER)
Wayne Heineman and Jennifer Leighton, both of Manchester, greet their pit bulls "Baby Boy Jamison" and "Diamond" after they were fixed as part of the Manchester Animal Shelter's free fix-a-pit program. (DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER)
Manager Shelley Greenglass said the shelter has been working with Manchester police animal control officers to map out the areas of the city with the highest concentration of unaltered pit bulls. She recently sent out a letter to 175 owners informing them about the program.
Joan McGivern of Manchester Animal Shelter checks in with Diamond after surgery as part of the shelter's free fix-a-pit program. (DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER)
Veterinarian Kim Trahan, who said she has done most of the surgeries, said: “It's a necessary thing to do.”
3/20/14--Manager Shelly Greenglass lets Lola greet her owners Timothy Stewart and his son Mason, 8, after she was spayed as part of the Manchester Animal Shelter's free fix-a-pit program. DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER
Greenglass said there are a lot of unwanted pit bulls and mixes: They comprise about a third of the total number of dogs that end up at the shelter.
While Fix-A-Pit is free for Manchester residents, owners from other towns can bring their pit bulls in for surgery at a cost of $150.
He and his son, Mason, 8, picked up Lola along with pain medication that could be needed as the anesthetic wore off.
Stewart , who has owned Lola for about six months, said she is a great family dog, but “she's very protective of the house.” If a stranger appears, he said, “she won't let them past the stairs.”
Heineman said he knows his dog's heritage. “He came from two friends,” he said. One had the mother, the other the father. “I was able to train him the right way. It was pretty easy.”
Tessa even goes camping with the family. But despite her friendliness, said Lynch, they have to deal with strangers' fear or dislike of pit bulls and pit mixes.
"They're wonderful family dogs," she said.
Fix-A-Pit clinics take place every Thursday at the shelter, with free vaccines and microchips, so when stray pits are found, the city can start tracking their owners.
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