Common Questions about Spay/Neuter

Commonly Asked Questions

Here are some answers to commonly asked questions about spay/neuter surgery and programs. Learn about common myths that can keep people from spaying and neutering their pet.

SNAP Program

What are the financial guidelines to qualify for SNAP?

Many factors are taken into consideration when your application is evaluated, such as total income, number of household members, rent/mortgage, assistance programs, age of pet, etc.

How much does it cost?

Costs vary among the participating SNAP veterinarians. Please call the SNAP veterinary practices in your area for prices.

How do I apply for SNAP?

Click here to read the requirements for SNAP and fill out an application.

Once I submit a SNAP application, how long should I wait to hear if I qualify?

You will receive information within one week of submitting the application. If you do not hear from us after two weeks, please call (617) 541-5007.

Are immunizations (shots) included in the program?

No, shots required prior to surgery are not included in SNAP. Only the spay/neuter surgery expenses are discounted. The Shalit-Glazer Clinic at the MSPCA in Boston is a low-cost one-day, one-visit option that does include required vaccinations in the fee. If you live in the Boston area, click here to learn more about making an appointment at the Shalit-Glazer Clinic.

What if I don't live in Massachusetts?

The SNAP program is with participating Massachusetts veterinary practices only. If you live elsewhere, please contact SpayUSA for a low cost program in your area. Please note: You may apply for assistance only for your own pets. 

What if I have more than one pet I would like spayed/neutered?

If you have more than one pet that you would like to have spayed or neutered, please use the comment section of the form to describe the other pet(s). You will be notified as to your eligibility for the Spay/Neuter Assistance Program within one week of the time your application is received. If you need help completing the form, please call (617) 541-5007.

I'm a veterinarian and I want to learn more about SNAP. What do I do?

Read more about the SNAP program here and fill out an application.

General Spay/Neuter Questions

How old should my dog and/ or cat be when I get him/her sterilized?

Spaying or neutering early - as young as two months - protects your pet's health. Please spay your female pet before she has even one litter; and neuter your male pet before he has a chance to get out and impregnate unspayed females in your neighborhood. Help us reduce the pet overpopulation problem!

Is spay/neuter surgery dangerous or painful for my pet?

Spay-neuter surgeries are the most routine surgeries performed in the veterinary world and are very safe. They are typically very quick, too. Most pets are walking and eating within a few hours of the surgery.  Animals are prescribed pain medication after the surgery as needed. Complications are not common, especially when the owner follows all post-surgical care guideline.

What are the benefits of spaying or neutering my pet?

There are many benefits for both you and your pet - click here to learn more! Spayed females will avoid the risks of pregnancy and uterine infections, and will be far less likely to develop mammary cancer later in life. Neutered male cats do not spray your furniture, walls, and plants to stake out their territories. Neutering also discourages male cats and dogs from roaming, decreasing the likelihood of fights, car accidents, and disease. Neutering reduces the tendency to be aggressive toward humans and other animals, and it lowers your pet's risk of developing prostate cancer and other diseases.

I want to help end animal overpopulation! What can I do?

Visit our volunteer page to learn how you can help make a difference, or consider making a gift to our Boston Spay/Neuter Clinic.